Mother of boy who knifed teenager outside school hits out at Brent Council

The mother of a 15-year-old boy who murdered a teenager leaving school has hit out at Brent council for “failing” to help her son for two years before the killing in January in Willesden. 

The killer, who cannot be identified, stabbed 15-year-old Quamari Barnes three times in an ambush outside Capital City Academy. Quamari’s mother told the Old Bailey the stabbing, sparked by a petty feud on Instagram, was an act of “pure evil”. 

The killer was jailed indefinitely for murder yesterday and told he must serve at least 14 years behind bars. Today it emerged the killer’s mother had warned that her son’s behaviour was spiralling out of control but claimed her pleas for help were ignored. 

The court heard she first wrote to Brent council in 2015 saying “please help me save my son”, telling social workers he was “on a downward spiral”.  

She said she alerted officials when her son was threatened with violence, and warned them that moving him into different care and foster homes around Britain was contributing to his decline. 

Kirsty Brimelow QC, defending, said the boy had thrown himself out of a window in Herefordshire and was found walking along a motorway “trying to escape” from a placement in the North-West.

She said the boy also suffered from racist abuse at another care home. His mother says she asked repeatedly for her son to receive anger management classes, but it was only after he murdered Quamari that he began to receive treatment, behind bars. 

“Since 2015 (he) and his mother have been requesting he has anger management,” said Ms Brimelow.  (He) considered he had issues with his temper, was worried about it and wanted help. 

“The local authority was asked for help for two years. If he had had it before January this year, who knows?”

Boy, 15, jailed for life after teen stabbed to death over gang fued

The boy confessed to the murder yesterday afternoon, in a letter written to the judge hours before he was sentenced. He said a feud began with the “365” gang after he was beaten up on January 14 and called a “waste man” on Instagram Live a few days later. 

A friend gave him a knife and asked “whether I was going to take the violation”, the court heard. 

The teenager said he woke “frustrated and anxious” on the day of the murder, and when he could not find his grandmother to calm him down he went to wait outside Quamari’s school. 

The boy said he was looking for one of Quamari’s friends but decided to chase the victim when he spotted him singing as he left the school. “I’m really sorry for what I did, I don’t know why I did it, I didn’t mean to do it,” he wrote. 

Judge John Bevan QC decided to preserve the boy’s anonymity so he has a chance of rehabilitation, and noted that the anger management intervention had come “too late”. Brent council said: “An independent multi-agency review is now taking place. The council, along with other agencies involved, will be participating fully to help us agree how lessons can be learnt.”