The death in I993 of 18 year-old student Stephen Lawrence in a London suburb shocked the majority in the country. He and a friend were set upon by five white thugs, with Stephen being beaten and fatally stabbed. The five were subsequently cleared of his murder in a notorious trial and the police who carried out the initial investigation were later heavily criticised.
Then and now, it was considered a crime of hate, with the shy student targeted just because he was black, but over the years it seemed less and less likely that his killers would be brought to justice. However, because of advances in science and DNA testing, two men have been charged with murder, eighteen years after the terrible crime.
His parents, now separated, were in court today to watch Gary Dobson and David Norris answer charges that they killed their son. Both deny the murder of the teenager who had ambitions to be an architect and would be aged thirty-six had he lived.