David Gomoh: Four convicted of NHS worker's murder in Custom House
Jon King & Press Association
- Credit: Met Police
Four gang members have today been found guilty of murdering an NHS worker on a "ride out" to a rival neighbourhood.
David Gomoh - who had no links to gangs - was killed in the random attack in Custom House soon after leaving his home on April 26 last year at the height of the first lockdown.
Speaking outside the Old Bailey, Mr Gomoh's sister Lizzie said: "David's murder is without a doubt the hardest thing my family and I have been through. It is something that no family should ever go through.
"Nothing will bring back a life that was so full of promise and hope, a life that was brutally taken away from us, but we are grateful now that we can begin to mourn."
Vagnei Colubali, 23, of Suffolk Road, Enflield; David Ture, 19, of Bloomsbury Street, Camden; Mohammad Jalloh, 19, of Watt Street, Wapping; and a 17 year-old boy from Telford drove to rival territory prepared to "inflict serious and fatal injury", an Old Bailey jury heard.
All four were members or associates of the Northside Newham Gang operating in the north of the borough.
Det Ch Insp Laurence Smith, who led the investigation, said: "David was a young man with ambitions to make something of himself but his life was cruelly snatched away.
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"He was not involved in any gang nor was he mistaken by the group for someone they knew. His only crime – in their eyes – was that he lived in the wrong part of Newham and so was classed as a rival."
In preparation for the so called "ride out to the opp block", the four arranged for a stolen Dodge Caliper - which had been fitted with false plates - to be parked up ready for them the night before.
They set out from a hotel armed with knives and a change of clothes. They had also turned off their phones to escape detection.
The four drove around looking for possible targets and spotted Mr Gomoh in Freemasons Road.
The 24-year-old was on the phone to his girlfriend when he was stabbed 10 times in a frenzied attack.
His partner heard a male voice ask, "Where are you from?" before the phone call ended.
Mr Gomoh managed to stagger back to his home where he collapsed on the ground outside before his parents' eyes. Despite being given emergency surgery in the street, he died soon after arriving at hospital.
DNA evidence, CCTV and drawings made by Ture before, during and after the attack, were used to secure the gang members' conviction.
Ture’s child-like doodles were found by police in his bedroom drawer. They showed the group at "Threemasons Road" – a misspelling of where the killing took place.
They also showed one gang member with an Armani bag, which Colubali was seen wearing on CCTV.
Evidence also included the discovery of Jalloh's DNA on sunglasses found on the back seat of the Dodge as well as the 17-year-old's DNA and Mr Gomoh's blood found at the scene of the attack.
CCTV played in court showed that less than an hour before they set upon Mr Gomoh, the defendants came across another man who they chased. Fortunately, he managed to outrun the thugs.
Cameras on board a bus then captured the car turning its lights off and stopping beside David, who turned to run as the doors to the vehicle opened. The attack itself was also caught on CCTV.
The stolen car was later found abandoned in Lincoln Road, Canning Town, less than a mile from the scene.
All four defendants are due to be sentenced on September 17 for murder and a charge of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm linked to an earlier, failed attack.
Jurors deliberated for almost 15 hours before returning the verdicts of guilty on all counts.
Louise Attrill, senior crown prosecutor, said: "David Gomoh was tragically caught in the middle of this senseless feud and despite having no connection with gangs, was killed without hesitation or mercy.
"These defendants continue to show no remorse for their actions, claiming mistaken identity or providing no defence at all.
"But the prosecution has systematically exposed them as liars. They were part of a co-ordinated group that set out looking to maim and kill."
Det Ch Insp Smith said that not only has Mr Gomoh's family had to deal with the trauma of witnessing him dying outside their own home, but now have to face the reality of living without their son and brother for the rest of their lives."