One bullet kills two men at New Year party

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The Independent Online

Two men who died after being shot at a New Year party in east London were killed by the same bullet, police disclosed yesterday.

The double murder is thought to have followed a row between a DJ and another man at the all-night party in Hackney. The bullet passed through the neck of the DJ, Ashley Kenton, 22, who performed as DJ Creation, penetrated a partition wall and hit a partygoer in another room. The second victim, Wayne Mowatt, 29, from south London, who is not believed to have been involved in the argument, died from his injuries eight hours later. The shooting happened at about 9am on Tuesday.

The police inquiry is being led by detectives from Operation Trident, who are investigating a series of "black-on-black" killings in London.

Detective Chief Inspector Julian Headon, who is in charge of the double murder inquiry, said: "The first victim was shot in the neck following an altercation ... It would appear at this stage the second victim was unconnected to the original altercation. Forty or more people were at this party and I am appealing for any of them to get in touch with the incident room in Putney."

The shooting took place towards the end of the all-night party at a flat where about 40 people were still celebrating the arrival of the new year. Mr Kenton died before he reached hospital. Det Chief Insp Headon said: "All indications so far are that this was an organised affair attended by a wide range of people. We would like to speak to anyone who may have information which could help with the murder investigation."

The shooting is the latest to involve young black men in London. On 21 December gunmen used their car to ram another car into a parked vehicle in north-west London before opening fire on the three occupants. The assailants drove off but turned their car around and shot again at the three people. A 33-year-old man was taken to hospital with gunshot wounds to his neck.

Scotland Yard said the number of black-on-black killings and attempted murders was continuing to rise despite a huge police operation. Between April and November last year, there were 16 such murders in London, compared with nine in the same period the year before. Officers also investigated 74 attempted murders.

Most of the shootings are connected to disputes over drugs, respect and territory, often involving dealers and Jamaican "Yardie" gangsters. But there have also been incidents involving DJs. In November Horace Pinnock, 29, better known as DJ Village, who hosted programmes on Radio 1, was shot dead outside a London hotel. In 1999 the white Radio 1 DJ Tim Westwood, who plays rap music and is a friend of DJ Village, was wounded by a gunman who pulled alongside his four-wheel-drive.