The murders of two 16-year-old boys who were fatally stabbed just a mile apart in south-east London on Saturday afternoon are linked, the Metropolitan Police have said.
Kearne Solanke and Charlie Bartolo were found with stab wounds in Titmuss Avenue, Thamesmead, and Sewell Road, Abbey Wood, on Saturday afternoon.
The two boys became the latest victims of lawless London last night which has prompted a murder investigation to be launched.
Police and paramedics were scrambled at around 5.10pm on Saturday to find two victims with stab wounds less than a mile apart.
But despite the efforts of the emergency services, both of the teenagers succumbed to their wounds and died last night. Police have now confirmed that the deaths are linked.
The Metropolitan Police have confirmed that the deaths of the two 16-year-old boys were in fact linked. Pictured: A large police cordon was still in place today
The Met Police have launched a double murder investigation following the fatal stabbings. Pictured: The scene today
As neighbours mourned the losses of the boys, police revealed on Sunday afternoon they are keen to hear from anyone who may have seen a dark-coloured SUV-type vehicle in the area.
Detective superintendent Richard McDonagh, speaking at the scene of one of the incidents, told reporters: ‘Homicide colleagues are investigating and are treating the two murders as linked.
‘I can assure everybody affected by these murders that skilled detectives will work tirelessly to discover what happened and provide answers to the young victims and families.’
He added: ‘Officers are especially keen to hear from anyone who might have seen a dark-coloured SUV or 4X4 type with distinctive silver roof bars in the areas around Sewell Road or Titmuss Avenue in the days prior to the murders.
‘We have already heard from a number of witnesses and I’m grateful to them.’
Forensic officers were pictured last night at one of the crime scenes following the fatal double killing in London on Saturday evening where two 16-year-old boys were stabbed to death
A forensic tent was pictured as police started to carry out their investigations in the early hours
Officers are seeking witnesses are especially keen to hear from anyone who might have seen a dark-coloured SUV or 4X4 type. Officers are pictured at the scene last night
A damaged motorbike was seen inside the police cordons at Sewell Road, Abbey Wood in south-east London
Crime scenes remained in place at both locations on Sunday morning with police offices guarding the cordoned off areas.
Several teenage boys laid flowers by the cordon in Titmuss Avenue, where a forensics tent could still be seen by some knocked over dustbins.
One was tearful as he placed a red love-heart balloon alongside them.
Officers later cordoned off a black Nissan with one saying it is a ‘car of interest’ in the investigation.
Bamidele Folorunso, a neighbour who did not give her age but lives nearby and was on the way to church, said: ‘It is very sad. We just found out the boy was on the floor and the police came and they tried to resuscitate him.’
A visibly upset Ms Folorunso said: ‘Since then, everyone in the area has been mourning. It is very sad to lose a 16-year-old boy.’
Victor, 30, a football manager, who says he went to school with the victim’s mother, said the stabbing was ‘not normal’ for the area but things have been getting worse in recent years.
‘There is a lot of stuff going on on the street with the young kids – it’s due to the lack of youth centres.
‘There is not really a place where kids say ‘this is a safe environment’.’
‘I’ve got three kids. I went and told my partner (about the stabbing) and she said ‘I want to get out of here’.’
Teresa Cheshire, 50, who also lives on the road, said her children walk down the road every day.
She said: ‘I just saw a lot of people by the bin shed. ‘All I heard was the screaming and that was at 5.20pm.
Police and paramedics were scrambled at around 5.10pm on Saturday to find two victims with stab wounds at Sewell Road in Abbey Wood and Titmuss Avenue in Thamesmead, less than a mile apart. Pictured are officers at the scene last night
Crime scenes remained in place at both locations on Sunday morning with police offices guarding the cordoned off areas. Pictured: Officers at scene last night
‘It is scary because it is all the press and everything but it is for all the wrong reasons. ‘I’m frightened to let my kids outside now. ‘It’s just shocking.’
Meanwhile Gillian Southwest, 48, who also lives on the road, said: ‘It is terrible. I have lived here for 28 years.
‘If it’s the boy I think it is he’s a really a good boy.’
A 32-year-old man, who did not wish to be named but lived on the road all his life, said he was waiting for an ambulance for his grandmother when a commotion began.
‘I heard some noise at about 6 o’clock – the bins were all rattling. There are always some kids running through making noise but something like this is out of the ordinary. To hear something like this in this area is shocking.’
The two boys have become the latest victims in the bloodshed to have swept across the capital, with eight people fatally stabbed or shot since October 25.
This is a breaking news story. More to follow.
A timeline of violence on London’s streets
October 25, Henley Road, Illford: Fatal shooting kills Saydi Abu Sheikh and 32-year-old Zakariya Jeilani Mohamed.
October 29, Lower Marsh Street: Fatal stabbing kills 32-year-old Adrian Keise.
October 30, Railton Road, Brixton: Fatal shooting kills two men including delivery driver Guilherme Messias Da Silva
October 30, Harrow Road, Wembley: Fatal shooting kills a 21-year-old man
November 3, Colindale Avenue, Colindale: Three men are knifed in the street. No arrests.
November 23, Stockwell station, Lambeth: teenage boy was brutally stabbed on a busy Victoria Line train
November 26, Greenwich, Sewell Road, Abbey Wood and Titmuss Avenue, Thamesmead: Two 16-year-old boys stabbed to death a mile apart from one another