Family of murdered Mohamed Dura-Ray, 16, hear of his final moments
Mohamed's family are still appealing for witnesses to come forward to put his killer behind bars
The family of Mohamed Dura-Ray have heard about the sixteen-year-old’s final moments almost two years after he was stabbed to death.
The aspiring engineer, known as Mo, died just two weeks before his seventeenth birthday after he was stabbed outside Canterbury Place, on the Newington estate, in Walworth, on September 14, 2015.
An inquest into his death heard how he had been involved in an altercation with an “unknown male” who “swung his right arm up over Mohamed” who then stumbled backwards, saying “I’ve been stabbed”.
Southwark Coroner’s Court heard how two autopsies found Mohamed died from a single stab wound to the chest, caused by a bladed object.
No defensive wounds were found to his arms or hands and there was no significant natural disease that could have caused or contributed to his death.
Detective Superintendent Cary Gawley, from Lewisham police station, told the court police were called to the scene at about 10.19pm by a member of the public who said there was a boy on the ground and other boys running away from the scene.
One witness described how Mohamed’s friends tried to help him and stayed with him until paramedics arrived, DS Gawley told the court.
“His friends were crying and took off his hoodie and applied pressure to the wound and stayed with Mohamed until the ambulance arrived,” he said. “Another witness said he saw someone running and then collapsing.”
London Ambulance Service arrived at the scene at about 10.22pm and gave Mohamed emergency treatment but he was sadly pronounced dead at 10.52pm.
The court heard how a letter with blood on it was recovered from the scene, as well as knives and other items.
A sample of the blood matched Mohamed’s DNA and a suspect was identified whose name was on the same letter.
“On that letter we did recover Mohamed’s blood and as a result of that that was one of our lines of inquiry,” said DS Gawley.
“There were kitchen knives, a lock knife, screwdriver, and also a large blue-handled kitchen knife recovered in shrubbery at the estate.
“There were quite a few knives floating around the estate at this time. The actual knife involved in this offence is still outstanding.
“The CCTV was harvested but the actual attack was shaded by some foliage and trees so I wasn’t actually captured on camera.”
The suspect whose name was on the letter was arrested and charged with murder but the case was later dropped as a witness no longer wanted to give evidence.
Coroner Henrietta Hill gave a conclusion of unlawful killing.
“The only conclusion I’ve considered is one of unlawful killing,” she said.
“This young man died by a single stab wound to the chest by somebody who intended to commit serious harm.”
Mohamed – whose full name was Alhaji Mohamed Dura-Ray – was born at King’s College Hospital on September 30, 1998.
He lived on the Aylesbury estate with his younger sister and mother and studied at Walworth Academy.
One of his favourite subjects was maths and he planned to go on to study engineering at University College London.
In a statement read out to the coroner’s court, Mohamed’s mother Mariama Karma described him as her “angel” and her “little star”.
“He used to sit with me every night; he really loved me and I loved him,” she said.
“He was always polite to our neighbours and his aunties and uncles. He always helped old ladies in our block of flats to carry their shopping.”
Ms Kamara said they were looking forward to celebrating her birthday which was the day after Mohamed died and that he had made her a heart and was taking her out for ice-cream.
“I’m going to keep trying to find out who killed my son,” she said outside the court after the inquest hearing. “I won’t just relax.”
“It’s heartbreaking; I cry every day, I’m depressed,” she added.
Mohamed’s uncle Mohammad Bangura said the family was still appealing for any witnesses to come forward.
“It happened to us, but it could happen to anybody,” he said.
“He was a brilliant young man; he helped his mother with a lot of things in the house and when she lost him we see her walking down the street but you know she’s not there because something’s eating her away.
“Hearing about what happened now [at the inquest] it cushions some of the blow a bit.”