Islington murder trial: Jurors shown CCTV of footballer’s final moments

“SHOCKING” CCTV footage from the final moments of a promising teenage footballer stabbed to death in the street was played to jurors today.

Godwin Lawson, 17, and two friends were attacked for no apparent reason by four youths wearing hoods or balaclavas, it is claimed - including Daniel Riley, 22, of Caledonian Road, Holloway, Koffi Osimeh, 19, of Heron Drive, Finsbury Park, and Matthew Lanihun, 20, of Megan Court, Holloway.

One of the gang was heard to shout, “Wet him, wet him,” before Godwin was stabbed once through the heart, jurors heard.

Godwin collapsed near Stoke Newington station in Amhurst Park, Hackney, shortly after 1.30am on March 27 last year.

Footage of the incident shows him staggering over to the pavement where his friends Julian and Daniel Borja, who were also stabbed, desperately tried to save his life.


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Godwin’s parents Yvonne and Calvin watched in distress as the film was played at the Old Bailey on Wednesday, January 5.

Prosecutor Simon Denison QC said the friends “were attacked suddenly and without warning,” adding: “Godwin Lawson was stabbed once through the front of his chest into his heart. He collapsed almost immediately and he died on the pavement where he fell.”

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He added: “We don’t know why they did it.”

Godwin grew up in Stamford Hill and returned there most weekends to see friends and family from Oxford, where he was attending Oxford United FC’s academy. He dreamed of one day playing for Manchester United.

Julian Borja, 21, who was also carrying a knife that night, later told police he saw a group coming towards them, one of them wearing a balaclava over his face and wielding a knife, who stabbed him in the stomach and then in the back as he tried to run away.

Daniel Borja claimed he heard someone shout, “Wet him, wet him” before he was stabbed four times. Both have fully recovered.

Godwin was left in the middle of the road as the group ran off, and “struggled against and through some parked cars on the pavement where he collapsed,” said Mr Denison.

“He was helped up by Daniel Borja but he then almost immediately collapsed again.”

As he played the CCTV footage, Mr Denison said: “You are watching the last moments of Godwin Lawson’s life and you will see him collapse on the pavement.

“Because that’s what you know what you are looking at, it is shocking footage.”

The court heard that neither witnesses nor the CCTV footage could identify the killers.

Police arrived to find Julian Borja’s intestines hanging from his body - but when asked who had done it, he simply replied: “F*** off.”

The court heard that all four defendants - including Moise Avorgah, 20, of St Ann’s Road, South Tottenham - contacted each other on their mobiles near the scene around the time of the killing.

Avorgah’s blood was found at the scene and in a car he hired, captured on CCTV near the scene, and he was treated for an injury to his finger less than half an hour later at the Royal Free Hospital in Hampstead.

Osimeh and Riley were arrested in Folkestone, Kent, and Lanihun was arrested at Holloway police station. All four men gave no comment interviews to police.

All deny murder, two counts of attempted murder and two alternative charges of wounding with intent. The trial continues.

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