A student stabbed a teenager to death when a WhatsApp row over who was the “least gay” escalated out of control.
Paul Akinnuoye, 20, fatally knifed 19-year-old Jordan Wright in the chest after falling out in a group chat called ‘Ice City Boyz’.
The pair traded homophbic insults and the defendant called Jordan a “batty boy”, who then retorted “on your mum’s life I’m straighter than you”.
Akinnuoye armed himself with a small knife and travelled from Tunbridge Wells in Kent to Shooters Hill in south east London to settle the argument.
But the victim, who was due to start a construction apprenticeship days later, thought it was a “fist-fight ting” and so had no weapon.
In the hours leading up to the assault, Jordan and Akinnuoye had both been part of a group chat on WhatsApp which developed into an argument between the two.
The row escalated so far that that the pair arranged to meet for a fight to settle their differences on April 19 last year.
The group entered the park in Blackheath, south east London, where a fight began, during which Jordan was stabbed to death in the chest.
Helped out of the park by friends, the teenager collapsed at the entrance after saying, “I feel unwell”.
CCTV footage before the attack captured the two men meeting up and showed Akkinuoye being physically held back from Jordan following an exchange of words.
In the struggle part of the knife was left at the scene while the defendant made off in a taxi.
Residents and passers-by came to try and save him by giving the stricken man first aid until paramedics arrived. But he died at Queen Elizabeth Hospital at 9.24pm.
A post-mortem held at Greenwich Mortuary the following day gave cause of death as an incised wound to the chest.
Other stabbing injuries were also found on his body.
The murder weapon was found in shrubbery within the park and the weapon was found to be the same knife taken from Akinnuoye’s home.
A specialist sniffer dog found a piece of red plastic on the ground which Akinnuoye’s housemates later identified as belonging to a set of knives.
Akinnuoye was arrested on April 26 a gave “no comment”.
He was found guilty of murder in February following a trial at the Old Bailey and is to be sentenced today (Thurs).
Jordan’s mother, Katharine Alade said she believed her son’s condition contributed to his “innocent” outlook to life, meaning he did not fully understand the dangers on the streets such as knife crime, gangs and violence.
He had been a “gift” born relatively late in life when she had not planned more children – and despite enduring challenges from having autism, he had wanted for nothing and was happy and loving, she said.
In a victim impact statement which she read to the court, Ms Alade, revealed that the trauma caused by her son’s death had left her feeling so upset she had considered suicide.
She said: “Jordan was a happy, loving thoughtful child.
“But he had characteristics and his behaviours. He was not realistic or understood the complexities of life and the dangers of the streets, crime and gangs.
“He thought everyone was just like him, but he found out how easy it is to lose your life.
“He would just play on his XBox or iPad, it was me who wanted him to start going out more to help him integrate and socialise. How I wish I had just let him be.
“He was very special, he was my baby even as an adult and we had a very loving relationship.
“You don’t realise until it happens to you how far reaching one moment of madness can be and what an impact it can make on your life forever.
“There is not one day when I don’t shed tears.
“I didn’t think it was possible to feel such physical, psychological or mental pain until that fateful day last April.
“I know I will never be the same. It is now nearly a year later and I still feel as depressed as I did the day I went to Queen Elizabeth’s Hospital in Woolwich to be told that my son did not make it.
“He wanted for nothing, had a loving home and went on wonderful holidays.”
She said that it was only when it came to his funeral how much Jordan had been loved – there were over 600 mourners and prior to that they had had 300 people at his memorial nine days after his untimely death.
She added: “I could have dealt with him dying at such a young age through illness, but not by the hands of a boy the same age as him and over what?
“I expected him to be burying me not the their way around. I expected him to get married. But he was struck down in prime of life.
Jordan’s father, Neville Wright, also described how his son’s unfulfilled potential haunted him on a dailly basis.
He said: “Jordan was my son, his death has changed my life forever.
“I loved my son. He was very loving, funny and a very caring person, as well as a very popular person.
“I think of him every day – of what he would have achieved in life – he is gone, but not forgotten.
“He was very popular when I took him in to work, was very handsome and, everybody liked Jordan.”
John Femi-Ola QC, defending, told the court the defendant was born in Nigeria and went to private schools in his homeland and Britain.
He added: “It is an appalling waste what happened that night.
“Two families have been reduced by this tragedy.
“He is truly remorseful and is haunted every day by these events.”
His mother is a lecturer at Middlesex University, the court heard.
Three other men who were arrested on suspicion of murder on May 4 last year and were released under investigation, have all been released with no further action.
Akinnuoye, of Cobbetts Ride, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, had three previous convictions for six offences.
These included possession of a knuckle duster in October 2016 in which he was given a conditional discharge plus one previous conviction for dangerous driving in 2017.
He will be sentenced later today.