Schoolboy stabbed to death in London had ‘absolutely no affiliation with gangs’, family says

The family of a schoolboy who was stabbed to death in east London has said that the 14-year-old had no affiliation with gangs.

Jayden Moodie was rammed off a moped on Tuesday and then repeatedly knifed, in an area of London notorious for county lines drug dealing.

“I would like to stress Jayden had recently moved from Nottingham to London and had absolutely no affiliation with gangs,” Leon Green, the schoolboy’s cousin, said in a statement to reporters on Thursday, addressing the rumours of gang links.

“Focus needs to be on the fact that he has been brutally murdered in cold blood and deserves a fair chance at justice as much as anyone else in this situation.

“If there are people in our streets that are capable of killing a 14-year-old child, then no-one is safe, and they need to be caught and brought to justice.”

Detectives believe that the schoolboy’s murder was “targeted”, with an “intent of lethal force from the outset”. 

“A lot of people are saying ‘young man’ – he’s not,” said Chief Superintendent Richard Tucker. “He’s a boy. He’s 14.”

“Whatever the reasons for his death, he was 14 years old and I would urge anyone who has any information to come forward and assist us to catch the people who did this horrific, horrific offence.”

A section 60 order is in place at the scene of the murder in Waltham Forest, allowing police officers to search anyone in the vicinity for weapons.

Marcellus Baz, a youth worker for a Nottingham-based project called Switch Up, said Jayden and his mother had recently moved to London for a “new start”.

Mr Baz told the BBC that Jayden “seemed like a really respectable, polite young man that had his life mapped out”.

“He wanted to go down the construction, painting and decorating route,” he said.

Jayden’s family said that the teenager had a keen interest in bikes, loved sports and was due to start at a boxing academy this month.

“He had a huge heart and would do anything for everyone, especially his family. He will be sincerely missed,” his cousin said.

The borough where Jayden died, Waltham Forest, has been recently blighted by gang crime, with the local authority investing £3m over the next four years into a prevention programme.

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Police patrols in the area have been stepped up in the wake of Jayden’s murder.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the incident room on 020 8345 3734 or tweet information to @MetCC. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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