Murder suspect remains in hospital after boy, 14, killed in sword rampage

A murder suspect remains in hospital after a 14-year-old boy was killed and four others were injured in a stabbing in east London.

A 36-year-old man was tasered and arrested in Hainault on Tuesday morning, then taken to hospital, after sustaining injuries when his van hit a house.

Four other people were injured in the attack – two Met officers who suffered wounds that require surgery, but are not life-threatening, and two members of the public whose injuries are also not thought to be life-threatening.

Forensic investigators in Laing Close in Hainault, north east London.
Forensic investigators in Laing Close in Hainault, north-east London (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Speaking on LBC on Wednesday, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley said a female officer was in surgery for several hours on Tuesday after suffering “horrifically serious” wounds to her arm.

She came close to losing her hand in the attack, he told host Nick Ferrari, while a male colleague also suffered serious injuries to his hand.

Speaking about the young victim who died, he said: “The first thing you have to say is for the parents involved, who’ve lost their 14-year-old, and that is just horrific, and it’s everyone’s worst nightmare.

“I’m sure we’re all thinking about them.”

Chief Superintendent Stuart Bell, of the Metropolitan Police, said he did not believe it was a targeted attack, and it is not believed to be terror-related.

The sword-wielding suspect was tasered and arrested at the scene but has not yet been interviewed because of his injuries, the Met said.

POLICE Hainault
(PA Graphics)

Dramatic footage obtained by the PA news agency captured the suspect being cornered and tasered by officers on a residential driveway.

The video shows how officers shout at the suspect, saying “Don’t move, don’t f****** move” after he is brought to the ground by three separate taser discharges.

The words “suspect contained” are eventually heard as a female officer pulls the sword away from the attacker.

A Buckingham Palace spokesman said the King’s “thoughts and prayers are with all those affected” by the “horrific” stabbings, adding: “In particular, the family of the young victim who has lost his life.”

The force was initially called to reports of a vehicle being driven into a house.

Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Louisa Rolfe said there has been speculation about the suspect’s background, including police contact with him, and “despite urgent and extensive checks today, we have found no trace of a prior incident involving him so far, but we will of course continue to make those inquiries”.

Hainault incident
Chief Superintendent Stuart Bell reads a statement (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

A neighbour from nearby Laing Close, who witnessed the attacks, told PA he could “not stop envisioning the boy’s face”.

James Fernando, 39, said the suspect had asked one of his neighbours to “take the telephone from him to tell whoever was on the phone his location”.

He told PA: “Within two seconds after that she’s realised something isn’t right, started running and he’s pulled a samurai sword from the back of his trouser.

“She’s shouted to the other neighbour – a Nigerian boy who was on his way to school.

Hainault incident
Police officers tasering and detaining a sword-wielding man in Hainault (PA)

“As he’s turned around, he’s struck him on the face… he was dead on the spot.

“It’s quite traumatising now. I can’t stop envisioning the boy’s face.”

Speaking about what he saw of the suspect, Mr Fernando said: “He was running around, still after the police officers came, with the sword in his hand looking for victims.”

Another witness, who asked not to be named, told PA he heard shrieks and screams following the incident.

He said he saw a man dressed in yellow jumping over fences from his back window and heard someone shout “He’s got a massive knife”.

His words follow footage shared on social media of a man in the area dressed in a yellow hooded jumper brandishing a large knife in his right hand.

Hainault incident
Forensic investigators in Laing Close in Hainault (Jordan Pettitt/PA)

Other footage showed the suspect being chased by police as an officer is heard shouting “Lock your doors” as the sword-wielding man entered residential gardens.

Officers could be heard yelling “Come here”, “Come this way” and “Drop the sword” at the suspect, who could be seen climbing on top of an outbuilding and dropping into a garden.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak described the incident as “shocking”, adding: “Such violence has no place on our streets”.

Footage seen by PA shows a man in a yellow jumper chasing after an ambulance while holding a sword as a body lies motionless on the ground.

The home security video shows an ambulance parked next to the body lying on the road in Laing Close before the ambulance quickly drives away from the scene and the man runs after it, shouting.

In another video clip, sent by an anonymous resident, a police car arrives before the man verbally confronts the police and shouts “Is there anybody here who believes in God?” while standing next to the motionless body.

A voice is heard shouting “Drop the sword” before a police officer approaches the man and sprays a substance in his direction before he retreats.