April 21 2014 Latest news:
by Jon Dean
Monday, June 3, 2013
A talented young rapper suffered death threats and had his house shot at in revenge for a murder he told a court he did not commit.
Tommy McInerney, 21, denies the murder of Andrew Jaipaul who was stabbed 25 times with broken glass and kitchen knives in a brutal killing on the Andover Estate, off Seven Sisters Road, Holloway, in June 2011.
McInerney, formerly of Lennox Road, Finsbury Park, says the first he heard about the killing was in a phone call and from that day onward has been subject to death threats on Facebook and even had gunshots fired through his front room window – in a campaign that eventually forced his family out of their home.
The crown allege McInerney is a prominent member of Archway’s Busy Block gang, which they say attacked and killed Mr Jaipaul en masse in revenge after one of their number was stabbed in the buttocks a few hours earlier.
But, giving evidence in the stand today, McInerney claimed that on the evening of the slaying he was “chilling” and “enjoying the weather” in New Orleans Walk, in Hornsey Rise, where other groups of youths from the area had also gathered.
He said he noticed some of the youngsters had dwindled, and asked a young man on a push bike where everyone had gone, to which he replied “to Wray Crescent to show face”. Asked what “to show face” meant, McInerney said: “Walking in their area as a statement they weren’t scared.”
McInerney, who was with a friend, said he was unsure what to do but decided to try to catch up the group for “safety” as he feared youths from Wray Crescent would “come straight back up.”
He claimed the pair were trying to catch up the group heading towards Wray Crescent when they heard the noise of smashing glass and fled the scene.
Later that night he received threatening a telephone call telling him about the killing and accusing him of withholding information.
When his dad took the phone off him, he said he was sent messages on Facebook saying ‘Tom R.I.P.’.
He told the Old Bailey his house was later shot at and was sent to live with his aunt in Enfield, while his family left the area.
When he was arrested and charged, he was sent to HMP Pentonville where he claims to have suffered daily threats from the man charged with the shooting of his family home.
McInerney, who said he wanted a music career to help support him, his girlfriend and new baby, described Busy Block as less of a gang and more a group of friends.
The 21-year-old, who said he had received messages of support for his music from famous rappers Chipmunk and Maverick Sabre, denied his music videos carried violent messages aimed at gang members.
He said: “I was trying to make a career. Me being violent would not attract a record label so I tried to keep that to a minimum.”
Thomas McInerney, of Lennox Road, Finsbury Park; Allan Kalema, of Cardinals Way, Archway; Warren Brooks, of Ritchie Street, Islington; Jojo Mafwa, of St Margaret’s Avenue, Tottenham; Tirrell Ball-Thomas, of Colthurst Crescent, Finsbury Park; a 17-year-old from Islington and a 15-year-old from Upper Holloway all deny murder, conspiracy to cause grievous bodily harm and violent disorder.
Another defendant, Orvill Sterling, of Green Street, Enfield was acquitted after the crown said he had no case to answer.