Hair 'found on Stephen Lawrence accused's clothes'

 

Tiny blood, hair and fibre samples that prosecutors claim were linked to black teenager Stephen Lawrence were found on the clothes of two men accused of his murder, a court heard today.

Prosecutor Mark Ellison QC outlined to a jury how modern forensic techniques were used to detect the traces more than a decade after the 18-year-old's murder.

Mr Lawrence was stabbed by a gang of white youths at a bus stop in Eltham, south east London in April 1993.

Gary Dobson, 36, and David Norris, 35, both of south London, deny the murder.

A cold case review was started in 2007 during which forensic experts re-examined clothing seized as part of the original police investigation.

Mr Ellison said that new evidence was found that "consists of the finding of textile fibres, blood and hair linked to Stephen Lawrence on clothing seized from the defendants as part of the original investigation in 1993".

The court was told that a tiny bloodstain found on Dobson's grey jacket was a billion-to-one match to Mr Lawrence's DNA.

Mr Ellison said some of the blood on the collar had soaked into the fibres, suggesting it had been wet and had come from the attack.

There were also minute flecks of blood on the jacket itself which had been found by microscopic examination. These did not contain a full DNA profile.

In total there were 16 fibres which could have come from three separate items of clothing worn by Mr Lawrence, found either on the jacket or its bag, the jury heard.

Two hairs were found in an evidence bag used to store Norris's jeans, one of which was 2mm long and was found to match Mr Lawrence's DNA to a certainty of one in 1,000.

A total of seven fibres were also found on Norris's sweatshirt which potentially came from two items of Mr Lawrence's clothes, the jury was told.

Earlier the court heard that the 18-year-old student was attacked after being surrounded by a group of white men as he and his friend, Duwayne Brooks, waited for a bus in Well Hall Road, Eltham, south east London, in April 1993.

Mr Ellison said: "One of the group was heard to say 'What, what nigger?' and at the same time the whole group rushed towards them."

Mr Brooks managed to run off after shouting "Get up and run, Steve."

But, Mr Ellison continued: "Stephen Lawrence did not manage to get away. The group quickly surrounded him.

"One witness described that he was swallowed up by the weight of numbers and forced to the ground."

Medical evidence suggested one of the two stab wounds to his torso was inflicted when he was standing, the other when he was on the ground.

Mr Ellison said the attackers were "a group of like-minded young white men who acted together in the execution of this attack".

"They reacted together as one on seeing two black men. The only discernible reason for the attack was the colour of his skin."

He said the group "shared the same racial animosity or motivation".

Mr Lawrence's parents, Doreen and Neville, sat feet away from the accused as the jury of eight men and four women was sworn in. One of the jurors is black.

As the case was opened, Mr Lawrence left the court but returned later as the scientific evidence was outlined.

Defending Dobson, Timothy Roberts QC, told the jury that the clothing had been contaminated while in police custody and the evidence amounted to only "a teaspoon".

Stephen Batten QC, for Norris, agreed with Mr Roberts' claims about possible contamination and claimed that the jeans and sweatshirt had belonged to Norris' brother.

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
Young Winstone: His ‘tough-guy’ image is a misconception
people
Sport
Adnan Januzaj and Gareth Bale
footballManchester United set to loan out Januzaj to make room for Bale - if a move for the Welshman firms up
Arts and Entertainment
Ellie Levenson’s The Election book demystifies politics for children
bookNew children's book primes the next generation for politics
News
Outspoken: Alexander Fury, John Rentoul, Ellen E Jones and Katy Guest
newsFrom the Scottish referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
News
i100
Sport
Yaya Sanogo, Mats Hummels, Troy Deeney and Adnan Januzaj
footballMost Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
Arts and Entertainment
L to R: Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Captain America (Chris Evans) & Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) in Avengers Assemble
film
News
Nigel Farage celebrates with a pint after early local election results in the Hoy and Helmet pub in South Benfleet in Essex
peopleHe has shaped British politics 'for good or ill'
Arts and Entertainment
Pharrell Williams' “Happy” was the most searched-for song lyric of 2014
musicThe power of song never greater, according to our internet searches
Sport
Tim Sherwood raises his hand after the 1-0 victory over Stoke
footballFormer Tottenham boss leads list of candidates to replace Neil Warnock
Arts and Entertainment
Sink the Pink's 2013 New Year's Eve party
musicFour of Britain's top DJs give their verdict on how to party into 2015
Voices
Strictly Come Dancing was watched by 6.9m viewers
voicesIt has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Roffey says: 'All of us carry shame and taboo around about our sexuality. But I was determined not to let shame stop me writing my memoir.'
books
News
i100
News
Caplan says of Jacobs: 'She is a very collaborative director, and gives actors a lot of freedom. She makes things happen.'
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

The West needs more than a White Knight

Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

The stories that defined 2014

From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?
Finally, a diet that works: Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced

Finally, a diet that works

Californian pastor's wildly popular Daniel Plan has seen his congregation greatly reduced
Say it with... lyrics: The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches

Say it with... lyrics

The power of song was never greater, according to our internet searches
Professor Danielle George: On a mission to bring back the art of 'thinkering'

The joys of 'thinkering'

Professor Danielle George on why we have to nurture tomorrow's scientists today
Monique Roffey: The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections

Monique Roffey interview

The author on father figures, the nation's narcissism and New Year reflections
Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Introducing my anti-heroes of 2014

Their outrageousness and originality makes the world a bit more interesting, says Ellen E Jones
DJ Taylor: Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

Good taste? It's all a matter of timing...

It has been hard to form generally accepted cultural standards since the middle of the 19th century – and the disintegration is only going to accelerate, says DJ Taylor
Olivia Jacobs & Ben Caplan: 'Ben thought the play was called 'Christian Love'. It was 'Christie in Love' - about a necrophiliac serial killer'

How we met

Olivia Jacobs and Ben Caplan
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's breakfasts will revitalise you in time for the New Year

Bill Granger's healthy breakfasts

Our chef's healthy recipes are perfect if you've overindulged during the festive season
Transfer guide: From Arsenal to West Ham - what does your club need in the January transfer window?

Who does your club need in the transfer window?

Most Premier League sides are after a striker, but here's a full run down of the ins and outs that could happen over the next month
The Last Word: From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015

Michael Calvin's Last Word

From aliens at FA to yak’s milk in the Tour, here’s to 2015