Boy, 15, fatally stabbed in Croydon park over ‘meat’ with another teen, court hears

Zaian Aimable-Lina died after being stabbed in Ashburton Park in Croydon, south London (Metropolitan Police/PA) (PA Wire)

Zaian Aimable-Lina died after being stabbed in Ashburton Park in Croydon, south London (Metropolitan Police/PA) (PA Wire)

A 15-year-old boy was stabbed to death in a park after being confronted by another teenager about “beef,” a court heard.

Zaian Aimable-Lina suffered a 4.7-inch (12cm) deep stab wound to her heart during the attack at Ashburton Park in Croydon, south London, on the night of December 30, 2021.

A 17-year-old, who cannot be identified due to his age, is on trial at the Old Bailey charged with her murder and possession of a knife.

On Monday, prosecutor Jacob Hallam KC told jurors that Zaian’s distraught friends had flagged down a passing police car at about 7 pm on the night of the attack.

Officers were led by the “scared and panicked” teens to where Zaian lay in the park.

Despite the efforts of members of the ambulance service, he was pronounced dead at 7:36 p.m.

Two of Zaian’s friends later provided eyewitness accounts of what happened, the Old Bailey was told.

Hallam told the jury that the defendant had joined Zaian’s group of friends to smoke cannabis in the park on that “dark, cold and windy night”.

He said: “They initially sat on a bench but, because it was very windy, they made their way to an abandoned building in the middle of the park so that the defendant could go inside out of the wind and make and light his roll-up.”

According to witnesses, the defendant dropped some cannabis on the ground and entered the abandoned building. When he got out, he approached Zaian and asked him “Wagwan brother” before punching him, he claimed.

The defendant had also allegedly asked him, “Zs, are you having problems with Little P?” before pulling out a knife and stabbing him, he told the jury.

After being asked if he had a problem with anyone, Zaian denied it, the court heard.

The victim turned and ran, but the defendant chased her through the park, Hallam said.

Zaian was found by his friends lying on the ground with three stab wounds, the jury was told.

Hallam said: “They tried to do everything they could for him, a group of panicked, scared teenagers, crying out for help and calling the emergency services.”

The prosecutor told the jury that Zaian had suffered three “significant” stab wounds: one to the left elbow that severed the bone, a 4 cm (1.6 in) deep wound to the lower back, and a chest wound.

The stab wound to the chest was 4.7 inches (12 cm) deep and punctured Zaian’s lung and heart, causing “massive blood loss,” he said.

The defendant, then 15 years old, denies the charges against him and the trial continues.


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