Tuesday 22 October 2019

'Do the right thing' - family of teenage girl stabbed in the back in 'ferocious' attack issue emotional appeal

17-year-old Jodie Chesney, who was stabbed to death in Harold Hill, east London on Friday night. Metropolitan Police/PA Wire
17-year-old Jodie Chesney, who was stabbed to death in Harold Hill, east London on Friday night. Metropolitan Police/PA Wire
People visit the area near to where 17-year-old Jodie Chesney was killed, at the Saint Neots Play Park in Harold Hill, east London, Britain March 3, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Floral tributes lie near to where 17-year-old Jodie Chesney was killed, at the Saint Neots Play Park in Harold Hill, east London, Britain March 3, 2019. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

The family of 17-year-old Jodie Chesney have made an emotional appeal for someone "to do the right thing" and help catch her killer.

Jodie was playing music with friends near a children's playground at Harold Hill, east London, on Friday when she was knifed in the back in a seemingly motiveless attack.

Jodie Chesney has been described as 'the nicest girl possible'
Jodie Chesney has been described as 'the nicest girl possible'

The student's father, Peter Chesney, said: "The message is just do the right thing. Someone knows who did this... the person needs to be caught. Jodie needs justice.

"We need for Jodie to have justice. No one thinks this is OK. Surely nobody who knows the guy who did this thinks it is OK."

Speaking at New Scotland Yard on Thursday, Mr Chesney added: "You can't get kudos for stabbing a 17-year-old in the back. So, just dob them in, grass them up, this is not alright.

"It was obviously a murder as well, it wasn't an accident... it was so ferocious the attack. She lost so much blood. This was on purpose, someone meant to murder her."

A 20-year-old man arrested in Leicester in connection with her killing remains in police custody.

Senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Dave Whellams said up to four people could have been involved.

He said: "I think day-by-day as the investigation progresses we get closer and closer to the truth, and closer to identifying who they are.

"I believe there's more than two of them involved, possibly up to four, and that one of them is black and one of them is white - definitely."

Of her murder, he said: "This is one of the worst that I have come across in a way because it is a 17-year-old girl who has done absolutely nothing to warrant this.

"Normally there is a reason - whatever that reason may be and however perverse we think that reason is - the person that's done this attempts to justify why they've done it, there is no reason that I can see here, it is completely motiveless."

Asked what Jodie was like, Mr Chesney said she was a "proud geek" and a "great girl", and added: "The fibre of her being was just about being good, kind... there was nothing bad in her body."

He said Jodie's death has torn the family apart and that they are "a mess", adding: "We don't know how to deal with it.

"Everyone is suffering because she was so good... everyone just can't believe - why her? It is not one life deserves to be killed over another, but specifically her, she was so kind."

Her stepmother Joanne said Jodie, who did not realise how popular she was, was "very dry" and "did not have a filter", who said exactly what she thought whether someone wanted to hear it or not.

Asked for their thoughts on the calls for tougher sentences for those who carry and use knives, Mr Chesney said "that would do it - 100 per cent".

Mr Chesney, who was wearing a purple ribbon pinned to his chest that was made by Jodie's friends, said many of her peers are dying their hair purple in her honour.

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