The family of an 18-year-old stabbed to death in an apparently unprovoked attack in north-west London have said knife crime is “out of control” in the capital.
Jason Isaacs, an apprentice carpenter, was with friends in Northolt on Saturday when they were targeted by balaclava-clad attackers on mopeds in what police say was a planned attack.
The group fled but the teenager became separated from them and was then stabbed multiple times with a large knife. Critically injured, Isaacs was taken to hospital where he died on Tuesday.
There have been a total of 18 fatal stabbings involving teenagers in London this year. The Metropolitan police have announced a £20,000 reward for information that leads to the prosecution of those responsible for Isaacs’ “truly horrific” death.
In a statement issued with the police appeal, the teenager’s family called for more to be done to stop knife crime. “We feel that knife crime in this area, and in London, is out of control and it must be stopped before another young life is taken, and another family has to suffer what we are suffering now,” they said. “We need to educate young people early on around the dangers of carrying knives in public places.”
The family said they had lost a “beautiful son” in “such senseless circumstances” and pleaded for help from the public to catch his killers. “We are currently living in a nightmare; our family is incomplete without Jason and will never be the same again.”
Isaacs, who was from Northolt, was planning to go to a party with four friends when the attack occurred just before 10.30pm on Saturday. The group had bought alcohol from an off-licence and were walking into Newnham Close when they became aware of two mopeds, both with pillion passengers wearing balaclavas.
“Jason and his friends ran and the mopeds gave chase,” DCI Noel McHugh said. “It was at this point that Jason became separated from his friends, and he was brutally attacked.
“After the suspects left the scene, Jason’s friends went back to Newnham Close to find him mortally wounded. This appears to have been an unprovoked, pre-planned attack. Jason, who was unarmed and not looking for trouble, was stabbed multiple times with a large knife.” Police, along with the London ambulance service and the air ambulance, were called to the scene. A postmortem examination is due to be carried out on Friday.
Isaacs’ family said he was “kind and loving”, was “working hard” as an apprentice carpenter and was passionate about music, fashion and Queens Park Rangers football club.
McHugh said: “Jason was a popular lad who has had his life brutally ended for no reason, leaving his family and friends devastated. We will do everything we can to track down his killers who acted in a truly horrific manner.”
A 17-year-old male arrested on Monday in connection with the investigation was bailed until a date in mid-December.
Anyone with information about the murder is asked to call police on 020 8785 8099 or via 101.
Follow to get the latest news and analysis in your PC theguardian