A MURDERER who stabbed his victim 24 times before trying to flee the country has been jailed for life.
A South London drug dealer has been convicted of murder after a court heard how he stabbed one of his clients 24 times in the head and neck in a ‘frenzied attack’ before trying to flee the country.
The pair had an arrangement to store narcotics at Errol’s flat, in return for crack cocaine, prosecutors said.
But the 23-year-old dealer knifed his victim in the head and neck 24 times during the horrific attack after the agreement turned sour on July 27 last year.
Hanniford-Brown callously took his drugs and fled the scene on a bike, before throwing away the weapon.
He rushed to Gatwick Airport in an attempt to leave the country – where he was apprehended by police and charged with murder the following day.
The court heard how Errol was a drug user and that his dealer Hanniford-Brown used his flat to store drugs, with Errol receiving crack cocaine in return for this service. As a result, the two had been on friendly terms until the night of the attack.
At around 1 am on Wednesday, July 27 last year, Hanniford-Brown went to the flat on Trinity Crescent in Tooting and let himself in with a set of keys. Soon after the two men got into an argument about the set of keys he had used to get in which developed into a full-blown physical fight ending with Errol suffering devastating injuries.
A friend of Errol’s at the flat was told by Hanniford-Brown to call an ambulance and put pressure on the wounds before he moved his safe used to store drugs and fled on a bicycle, disposing of the knife he used on the way home and then trying to flee the country.
Forensic examiners found extensive bloodstaining inside the address, not only in the lounge where the attack took place but also in the kitchen where someone had attempted to clean their hands. In addition, a handprint was found in the blood in the bedroom with Hanniford-Brown’s fingerprints.
On Thursday, July 28, 2022, Hanniford-Brown was arrested at Gatwick Airport as he attempted to leave the UK for Paris. He was charged with Errol’s murder the next day.
Throughout the investigation, Hanniford-Brown maintained that he had been attacked and was simply defending himself. He said that he had to stab Errol in order to protect himself.
DCI Laura Semple of the Met’s Specialist Crime Command said: “I am pleased that this dangerous, violent individual will pay the penalty for his actions.“My thoughts are with Errol’s family. I hope they can now find a measure of closure knowing that justice has been served.
“Hanniford-Brown claimed that he acted in self-defence and that he suffered with PTSD and a phobia of knives, he also said that if it wasn’t self-defence, he at least hadn’t intended to cause Errol serious harm.“However, the severity of the wounds he inflicted, the mobile phone data, and the steps he took to distance himself from the incident, indicated otherwise.
“The attack on Errol was one of extreme brutality – he was stabbed 24 times causing catastrophic injuries to his head and neck – inflicting wounds of that nature is indicative of a frenzied attack, not self-defence.”
A spokesperson for Errol’s family said: “Errol was the youngest of nine children, the baby of the family. He was a loving son, brother, uncle and nephew. Errol was humble, funny, and affectionate. A kind-hearted man who prioritised family.”He extended his love and kindness beyond family; to friends and people in society who needed support. It was impossible to dislike Errol and as a result, he had many friends who loved him as he loved them. Errol’s door was always open.
“This man took Errol’s life and then tried to run away. Some of us have been able to forgive, others have not, cannot, and will not.”Errol was taken from us too soon but leaves behind a legacy of love.”
Author: Andrew Collins