Six people have been arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of murder; four men in their 30s and two boys aged 13 and 14 are in police custody. 14-year-old Dea-John Reid was chased and stabbed to death in Birmingham. As police say racist language was directed at him and his friends before the incident.
West Midlands Police formally identified Dea-John Reid as the teenager who was chased in College Road, Kingstanding, Birmingham, on Monday about 7.30pm before being stabbed and collapsing.
Detective Chief Inspector Stu Mobberley from the force’s Homicide Unit said enquiries are ongoing.
“New information is coming into the enquiry all the time and being assessed”, he said.
“As the investigation has progressed we now believe there was an incident involving Dea-John and his friends shortly before the murder. That quickly escalated, resulting in Dea-John’s tragic death.
“During this precursor incident racist language was directed at Dea-John and his friends; that’s now being investigated.
The Attack On Dea-John
The attack evening took place following an earlier incident involving Dea-John and his friends during which they were subjected to racist language; including the N-word.
The earlier incident escalated, police said, and Dea-John was chased down a busy road in Kingstanding; north Birmingham, before being stabbed. He unfortunately died at the scene, and a postmortem examination confirmed the cause of his death as a stab wound to his chest.
Police are understood to be investigating the links between the first incident and the killing, which happened in the same area of Birmingham.
Dea-John’s family described the teen in a tribute on Wednesday, as an ; “incredibly talented young boy”. “We’d like to thank the emergency services for their diligence and support … and the public for their outpouring of love and support throughout this tragic and challenging time,” they said.
“This loss not only affects us but everyone Dea-John knew, we have lost a son, his siblings have lost a brother and others have lost a friend. The passing of this incredibly talented young boy will be felt by us all. How many more mothers will have to mourn for their sons for this to stop?”
Detectives are however in discussions with lawyers from the Crown Prosecution Service about the evidence they have; and whether the suspects in custody should be freed, charged or released while inquiries continue.