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Stephen Lawrence’s dad breaks down and says he’ll ‘never stop fighting for justice’ as brother says: ‘Time to speak up’

STEPHEN Lawrence’s dad today broke down as he vowed to never stop “fighting for justice” after his slain son’s murder probe was shelved.

Scotland Yard say they have no further lines of inquiry to follow up over Stephen’s killing in 1993 – with brother Stuart now urging witnesses to come forward and give the family “closure”.

Stephen was stabbed to death at a bus stop in Eltham, South London in a sickening racist slaughter that shocked the nation.

His parents were then forced to wait 19 years to see two men – Gary Dobson and David Norris – finally caged over the 1993 murder.

But three others named as suspects were never convicted.

Stephen’s dad Dr Neville Lawrence today broke down as he said he will never give up fighting for his son.

He told BBC Radio 4: “I kind of thought it would happen but I was praying that it didn’t.

“After 27 years fighting for justice and only having some justice I thought they would pull out all the stops to make sure they got the other people involved in Stephen’s murder.

“I said this yesterday and I say it again, I will never stop fighting for justice for my son who is lying in the ground in Jamaica.”

His words were echoed by Stephen’s brother Stuart Lawrence, who urged anyone with information to “speak up”.

He told Good Morning Britain: “Even though we’ve had two people convicted, it wasn’t just two people there that night.

“If you do know what happened, this is the time now to speak up.

“In my mind that’s the only way we’re going to have true justice, if someone is brave enough to come forward and talk about what happened that fateful night and give us some closure, that’s what we want as a family.”

Stuart also said he realises justice being served like in a “story book” or “movie” won’t bring his brother back but it means the family can get closure.

He added: “I know after this I’m going to get people on social media channels saying how we should “just get over it”, but it’s our lives.

“I’ve lost my brother, my mum’s lost her child, my dad’s lost his child.”

Stephen was murdered as he waited at a bus stop with his friend Duwayne Brooks on April 22, 1993.

What followed was one of the longest, most complex and mishandled murder investigations in Met Police history allowing the suspected killers to evade justice for almost 20 years.

It also highlighted racism in the UK and led to intense scrutiny of police forces across the country.

In 1998, a public inquiry into the Stephen’s murder investigation found the Met was institutionally racist.

Neville was asked whether he agreed with comments made by David Lammy that “it’s time for action and not another review” in regards to the PM’s promise of a new commission to look at racial inequality.

He replied: “It doesn’t make any difference whether you set out things to find out what the problem is, and you get ways to correct it, and you don’t use it. It’s just a waste of money and time. 

“Treat people with respect. Show you care for them. Don’t pounce on them and target them when a crime comes.

“Straight away you perceive it’s a black person. We are not the majority in this country, we are the minority – but we are the ones in prison more than anyone else.”

Stephen’s mum Doreen and dad Neville campaigned tirelessly for justice and policing reforms following his murder and his mum is now a Baroness sitting in the House of Lords.

They launched a private prosecution against three of the suspects in 1996 but it failed when Duwayne’s ID evidence was declared inadmissible.

A year later, an inquest ruled that Stephen was killed in a “completely unprovoked racist attack by five youths”.

And in 1999, the bombshell MacPherson Report was published – detailing institutional racism within Britain’s police forces.

Speaking about the inquiry, Neville said: “I spent every morning of my life in that court in Elephant and Castle. I went all round the country with the inquiry to make sure we got a sense of what was happening in the country. 

“These people came up with a way of trying to get these people to do their jobs better. But they have ignored it after all these years.

“They still haven’t got the guts to decide to treat people properly when they go out on the streets.

“As I can tell you from the very night my son was murdered, I have been trying to work with the Metropolitan Police to try and get justice. For years and years we have been trying.

“They still can’t understand the pain and suffering of families who lose their loved ones. They should be able…they are professionals…to get families the justice they need and want.”

In May 2011 Gary Dobson and David Norris finally faced trial for Stephen’s murder following a review of forensic evidence that found the victim’s DNA on the defendants’ clothes.

Both received life sentences with Dobson jailed for a minimum of 15 years and two months and Norris for 14 years and three months.

The judge at their trial described the attack as a “crime committed for no other reason than racial hatred”.

Two of three other suspects – Jamie and Neil Acourt – and have also served time for drug dealing.

While Luke Knight is still living in Eltham less than three miles from where 18-year-old Stephen was stabbed to death.

Met chief Dame Cressida Dick has said the investigation was moving into what she called “the inactive phase” but will be reviewed “periodically”.

She added: “It is well known other suspects were also involved in the events that night and it is deeply frustrating we have been unable to bring them to justice.”

Baroness Lawrence said: “It is never too late to give a mother justice for the murder of her son.

“Whilst the Metropolitan Police have given up, I never will.”

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