28 year old Michael Adegbite, a model, fitness instructor and teaching assistant who campaigned against knife crime was stabbed to death on Sunday, July 19, 2015 after the suspects pretended to be interested in buying the second hand MacBook laptop he advertised on a classified website- Gumtree for 200 pounds.
On Thursday, February 4, 2016, the Old Bailey court heard how Mr Adegbite had been lured by the three teenagers, Christopher Nzeh, Montel Ajayi and Isaac Owen-Brady, so they could steal the
computer. Thre three were found not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter.
Christopher Nzeh, 18, of Hitchin, was sentenced to 21-and-a-half years in prison after he was found guilty of manslaughter and previously admitted conspiracy to commit robbery and possession of a bladed article.
Isacc Owen-Brady, 18, of Enfield, was jailed for 12 years after he was found guilty of possession of the knife that killed Mr Adegbite. He also pleaded guilty to robbery and possession of a bladed article at a previous hearing in relation to a separate offence.
Montel Ajayi, 19, of Waltham Cross, was jailed for five years for conspiracy to commit robbery.
Adegbite arranged to meet the men after a friend advertised his Apple MacBook for sale on an internet site. An agreement to make the sale was reached to meet in Auckland Close, Enfield. Adegbite and a friend drove to the meeting and were approached by the teenagers who identified themselves as the buyers.
The laptop was shown to the men and passed around between them but one of them produced a knife and threatened Adegbite and his friend. Adegbite managed to snatch the MacBook.
Adegbite phoned a friend who lived nearby to tell him what happened and he came to meet them at the car carrying a metal bar and a hammer. The three men then drove around looking for the men who tried to rob them and found them about a mile away in Lackmore Road, Enfield. Adegbite got out of the car armed with the iron bar. Witnesses described seeing Nzeh swing at Michael with a knife and miss before a second attempt struck him on the chest. He fell to the ground and died despite desperate attempts by medics called to the scene Despite extensive efforts by the attending medics, they were unable to save him.
The three suspects were later arrested. The knife used to kill Mr Adegbite was found hidden in a garden through a small hole in the fence in a deliberate act to conceal it. All three were questioned but refused to answer questions about the crime. However, a thorough investigation by detectives fro the Met’s Homicide and Major Crime Command linked them to the crime with forensic and witness evidence.
Michael Adegbite’s family issued a warning to those who arm themselves with knives and asked them to consider the consequences of doing so.
“Michael’s family and friends have been shattered by the decision of Christopher Nzeh to carry a knife,” they said.
“Michael had never been in trouble with the police and was a young man who had everything to live for.
“We urge people to think about the tragic consequences that can come from carrying a knife, and never to take your personal safety for granted.
“If just one person decided to stop carrying a knife, it would be a fitting tribute to Michael and everything he stood for.”
Detective Sergeant Ben Wayment of the Homicide and Major Crime Command said: “Michael was a good person who was targeted by three men who had planned to rob him. Although they intended to steal, what was taken was Michael’s life; the crime left his family and friends inconsolable and this is a terrible waste of an innocent young life. These men have been sentenced today, not least because the public did so much to bring those responsible to justice. I want to thank all those who came to Michael’s direct aid and those who helped police arrest and prosecute those responsible”
Source: Metropolitan Police