Gipsy Hill teenager jailed for trying to kill schoolboy in West Croydon – who was lucky to survive

A teenager has been jailed for attempting to murder a 14-year-old schoolboy after leaving traces of his DNA on the weapon – despite the victim not helping the police with their investigation.

Rimel Hanchard, 17, of Charters Close, Gipsy Hill, was charged with attempted murder in November 2017. He denied the offence but was convicted on 25 June following a two-week trial at the Old Bailey.

He was sentenced at the same court on Thursday, 26 July, to seven years and six months’ imprisonment.
Shortly after 4.30pm on Saturday 3 February 2017, officers on routine patrol in Poplar Walk, Croydon came across a large group of youths fighting.

Officers found one youth – the victim – suffering from a stab wound to the neck. They administered first aid until the arrival of the paramedics and then London’s Air Ambulance also attended.

The victim was taken to a South London hospital where he received treatment before being discharged. He received a single stab wound to his left carotid artery and suffered severe blood loss.

Officers from the Met’s Trident and Area Crime Command spoke to the victim but he made it clear he did not wish to support the investigation and never provided an account.

Detectives identified the defendant through other witness accounts and the discovery of a six-inch kitchen knife at a bus garage near the scene. Forensic examination revealed the DNA on the handle matched that of Hanchard. He was arrested a week after the attack.

Officer in charge of the investigation, Detective Constable Sophie Watson from the Trident and Area Crime Command, said: “This was a horrific attack which the victim was incredibly lucky to survive. This investigation should act as a clear warning to anyone considering carrying or using a weapon that we will track down and bring to justice those intent on putting lives at risk, even without the support of a victim.

“We work tirelessly to prevent this kind of horrific violence happening on the streets of London and to apprehend those intent on committing such acts.”

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