Jodie Chesney's 'killers fist-bumped after stabbing her to death for respect' as family sobs hearing about her seven-inch knife wound

JODIE Chesney's killers were seen fist-bumping after stabbing her to death in a park during a "pathetic" turf war, a court heard today.

The 17-year-old's devastated family broke down crying as they were told of their daughter's horrific seven-inch wound inflicted as she hung out with pals near an East London playground.

The Girl Scout had been playing music and smoking cannabis in Harold Hill, Romford, when she was knifed in the back on March 1, the Old Bailey heard.

Manuel Petrovic, 20, Svenson Ong-a-kwie, 19, and two youths, aged 16 and 17, who cannot be named for legal reasons, deny her murder.


Earlier the court heard how the dying teenager was held by her sobbing boyfriend, Eddie Coyle.

Eddie had seen two figures approach them silently out of the darkness at around 9.20pm that night.

He saw the taller of the pair swing his right arm at Jodie's back, the court was told.

Jodie screamed and collapsed to the ground as the two figures ran off into the darkness, jurors heard.

Her boyfriend caught her as she fell and screamed and tried to keep her awake, the court heard.

Using a mobile phone as a torch, Jodie's friends could see she had suffered a deep wound to her back which bled heavily.

A local resident heard her screams and came to help as Jodie's friends became "hysterical", jurors heard.

The court heard that when she called out to ask if everything was OK, Eddie replied: "No. My girlfriend has been stabbed."

By the time an ambulance arrived, she showed no signs of life and was pronounced dead en route to hospital at the front of a petrol station.

Relatives of Jodie left the court today in tears after hearing the details of how she died.


Prosecutor Crispin Aylett said that a witness, Kay Connelly, had spotted a Vauxhall Corsa parked near her home in Gidea Park at 11.10pm.

He said: "Ms Connelly says that the headlights of the car were on and there were about four males standing by the driver's side of the car.

"Ms Connelly says that the males seemed to know each other and there was nothing to suggest that there was any tension between them.

"Indeed, Ms Connelly saw them fist-bumping one another.

"However, when they saw Ms Connelly approaching, one of them had jumped into the driver's seat of the Vauxhall Corsa and at least one other person got into the car.


Mr Aylett said that none of Jodie's friends had any idea who was responsible for the "terrible and cowardly" attack.

Following national publicity, police got a "breakthrough" when a witness reported two males getting into the stationary black Vauxhall Corsa.

Mr Aylett said but for the "chance sighting" Jodie's murder might have gone unsolved.

A couple of hours after the killing, a black Corsa registered to Petrovic was found abandoned about two miles away, he said.

Following his arrest, Petrovic admitted driving to Harold Hill with a friend and two others who had gone into the park to collect money and drugs.

He denied knowing the pair were armed beforehand, the court heard.

Investigators identified Petrovic's friend and the two others through CCTV footage and mobile phone data, jurors heard.


Mr Aylett said Jodie was a "beautiful, well liked, fun" young woman who had nothing to do with drug dealing and was unlikely to have been the intended target.

He told jurors: "The drug-dealing world is one of turf wars, rivalries and pathetic claims for 'respect'.

"And when drug dealers fall out, they do not take their problems to the police. Instead, they take matters into their own hands, prepared to use serious violence in order to prove whatever point it is that they wish to make.

"The prosecution allege that all four defendants had gone together in Petrovic's car to Harold Hill in order to mete out violence – and not as Petrovic has claimed, to collect money and drugs.

"If the prosecution are right in saying that Jodie Chesney was an entirely blameless individual who got caught up in some quarrel between drug dealers, then her murder was the terrible but predictable consequence of an all-too casual approach to the carrying – and using – of knives."

The defendants, all allegedly involved in drug dealing, deny murder.

The trial continues.


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