Timeline: the first Lawrence murder investigation

 

22 April 1993: Stephen Lawrence is murdered in Eltham, south-east London.

 

23 April: The first of many anonymous tip-offs names five suspects, including Gary Dobson and David Norris.

24 April: DS John Davidson joins the murder investigation. He interviews an informant, known as James Grant, who identified Neil and Jamie Acourt as gang leaders.

25 April: DS Davidson interviews Stacey Benefield, who was stabbed a month before Stephen died and makes a statement saying the attack was carried out by David Norris in the company of Neil Acourt. DS Davidson later says Mr Benefield's allegations would have justified the arrests of Norris and Acourt, and did not know why no such arrests were made.

26 April: Neil Acourt is seen leaving his home carrying a binliner but police photographers are unable to call for back-up as they have no means of communication.

7 May: Police swoop on the Acourts and Gary Dobson. Det Chief Supt Brian Weeden later admitted he did not know the law would have allowed him to make arrests much earlier on the basis of "reasonable suspicion". DS Davidson conducts the interview of Dobson. He is not given a crucial piece of evidence – photographs showing Dobson and Norris together – which would have allowed him to counter Dobson's denials he knew Norris.

Late 1993: DS Davidson joins the South East Regional Crime Squad. While on the anti-drugs unit he is accused by DC Neil Putnam of engaging in at least three corrupt acts as well as revealing in a conversation that he was in a corrupt relationship with gangster Clifford Norris.

16 February 1996: DS Davidson reports sick following allegations that he and colleagues "moonlighted" for an Australian businessman.

March 1998: DS Davidson retires from the Met a month before he is due to appear before a disciplinary tribunal.

16 March: Sir William Macpherson's public inquiry starts to hear evidence.

24 and 27 April: DS Davidson gives evidence to the inquiry and is later criticised for his refusal to see the murder as purely racist. However, the inquiry finds there is no evidence that he deliberately tried to thwart the investigation.

12 June: Sir John Stevens, then Commissioner of the Met, responds to a letter from Sir William seeking confirmation that there are no corruption inquiries related to Lawrence case officers or the suspects by saying there are no such investigations.

28 July: DC Putnam gives testimony to his anti-corruption unit debriefers about his claimed bent dealings with DS Davidson. He alleges DS Davidson also told him about corruption in the original Lawrence investigation – claims which were denied by the Yard.

11 September: The Yard tells the Macpherson inquiry there are new corruption allegations against DS Davidson – but states they do not relate to the Lawrence murder investigation.

Suggested Topics
News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
News
Destructive discourse: Jewish boys look at anti-Semitic graffiti sprayed on to the walls of the synagogue in March 2006, near Tel Aviv
peopleAt the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence