Police investigating the racially motivated murder of Stephen Lawrence 23 years ago have issued new digitally enhanced CCTV stills and images of a witness they are still trying to trace.
The 18-year-old was stabbed to death in an unprovoked attack by a group of six white youths as he waited at a bus stop in Well Hall Road in Eltham at 10.35pm on April 22, 1993.
Officer have now been able to enhance imagery of a man wearing a distinctive ‘V’ emblem jacket who visited an off-licence at 8pm that night which was just 330 yards down the road from the bus stop in Greenwich borough.
Witnesses have previously reported seeing a man in a distinctive green jacket with the ‘V’ emblem in the vicinity of Well Hall Road roundabout at about the time Stephen was attacked.
Following an initial confrontation, Stephen was subsequently stabbed in nearby Dickson Road. He was able to escape from the group and managed to run a distance of around 130 yards before collapsing. The suspects ran off down Dickson Road. Stephen was taken to Brook Hospital but was pronounced dead shortly after arrival after suffering two fatal stab wounds to his upper body.
DCI Chris Le Pere, who is in charge of the investigation, said: “We are appealing for this man to come forward so that we can speak to him to establish if he can assist with our enquiries, or if we can eliminate this strand of the investigation.
“He was seen in the off-licence at 8pm and then again later that night not far from where Stephen was attacked.
“It is important that we speak with him.
“The image of the distinctive jumper was previously circulated to media in 1993 and again in 2013. The CCTV was recently identified as part of a regular internal review of the case. Officers digitally enhanced it to give us the clearest possible image, and having carried out enquiries to trace him, now release it again to make a public appeal.
“The investigation remains open. Two individuals were found guilty of murder, but officers continue to follow lines of enquiry. We are hoping that over the passage of time allegiances may have changed, people may have moved away and feel more confident coming forward.”
Officers will be making further appeals for information later in the year.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the incident room on 020 8785 8310 or Crimestoppers , anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
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