Gangland days revisited by window cleaner's murder

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The evening began for Sean "Stretch" Jenkins as a family night out at Caesars club in south London where he watched a series of unlicensed boxing bouts.

After the rowdy entertainment the 36-year-old window cleaner went to the home of one of the fighters with friends and guests to celebrate. At about 4.30am a man walked into the party, drew a handgun and shot Mr Jenkins five or six times, killing him on the spot.

The murder has provoked an extraordinary out-pouring of grief - an estimated 2,000 people attended Mr Jenkins' funeral. The killing has evoked memories of the capital's old-style underworld - with unlicensed - but legal - boxing matches, a popular Londoner who loved his mother, a "wall of silence", and even a bit-part for a former gangland figure and associate of the Kray twins.

The question that Mr Jenkins' family - including his girlfriend, Lindsey, and their four-year-old boy, Ronnie - want to know is: "Who killed Stretch, and why?"

The case has not been straightforward for the police. Despite the shooting taking place on 4 December 2006 in a room about 20ft by 15ft, in front of up to 15 people, detectives are struggling to find witnesses.

Mr Jenkins' brother-in-law Steve Lang said: "Everyone loved Sean, he was the life and soul of any party. He was funny, gentle, and nice to everyone. His life was about working, going fishing, and taking his boy out.

"Nobody has any idea why he was shot. There is no reason for him to be shot. He had nothing to do with gangsters, or drug dealers, or anything like that. He was just in the wrong place at the wrong time."

Born and brought up in the south London area of Southfields, Mr Jenkins was a familiar figure as a 6ft 4in window cleaner - his height and long reach earning him his nickname.

On the night of 3 December Mr Jenkins was in a group of about 10 family members who spent the evening watching a series of three-round fights. While legal, the unlicensed events are not staged under conditions as strict as licensed fights and are often more violent and raucous affairs.

That night was no exception when a fight broke out among the crowd. The police were called to restore order when tables and chairs started to be thrown.

Later that evening, Mr Jenkins went to a house party held by one of the boxers in Carshalton, south London. Witnesses said he spent much of his time talking about his son, whom he was devoted to, and his mother, Maureen.

Towards the end of the evening, Mr Jenkins appeared to have had an argument with another man over what was later described as a "minor matter".

Shortly afterwards the window cleaner was shot.

As part of the investigation, the police plan to question some of the people at the earlier boxing event. They include Joey Pyle Jr and, possibly, his father, Joey Pyle Snr, who helped promote the boxing event. The older man is one of the last remaining "names" from the Sixties gangland scene. He was a friend of the Kray twins and was the best man at Ronnie Kray's wedding.

A 32-year-old man has been arrested and released on bail in connection with the investigation.