A schoolboy who was murdered in a suspected revenge attack is the second London teen to be fatally stabbed in just 24 hours.
The lad, 15, was stabbed near a row of shops at around 11pm on Tuesday night.
Locals say crowds of youths are often seen loitering outside a Co-Op on Green Lane, Thornton Heath, south London where the teen was stabbed.
Despite desperate efforts by paramedics the teenager was pronounced dead at the scene shortly before midnight.
He is the 17th teen to be murdered in the capital this year , the second in 24 hours and the third this month.
Fourteen of them have been stabbed and three shot. Only 12 were murdered in the whole of last year, with the worst toll at 29 in 2008.
Earlier this week in the early hours of Tuesday morning, a 19-year-old was stabbed to death on the Old Kent Road in Southwark.
Police believe he had been involved in an altercation with a large group of people outside the Afrikiko bar.
Five people were arrested on suspicion of murder near the scene of the crime. They were two 23-year-old men, a 21-year-old man and two 25-year-old women.
A Scotland Yard spokesperson said: “A murder investigation has been launched following the fatal stabbing of a teenager in Croydon.
“Police were called at around 23:00hrs on Tuesday, 8 August, to a male stabbed in Georgia Road near the junction with Green Lane, Thornton Heath.
“Officers and the London Ambulance Service attended and found the victim, a 15-year-old boy suffering from stab injuries. He was pronounced dead at the scene shortly before midnight.
“Whilst officers believe they know his identity, they await formal identification and confirmation that next of kin have been informed.
“A post-mortem examination will be arranged in due course.
“Officers remain at the scene and cordons are in place.
“There have been no arrests at this early stage.
“Detectives from the Homicide and Major Crime Command (HMCC) are investigating.”