Gary Dobson and David Norris jailed for Stephen Lawrence murder

 

Margaret Davis,Shenai Raif
Wednesday 04 January 2012 13:15
Gary Dobson, left, and David Norris were sentenced for the killing of Stephen Lawrence today
Gary Dobson, left, and David Norris were sentenced for the killing of Stephen Lawrence today

The judge in the Stephen Lawrence murder trial urged police today not to "close the file" on catching the rest of his killers.

Mr Justice Treacy made his appeal as Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe said that the remaining culprits "should not rest easily in their beds".

It is understood that police plan to meet next week to assess where the case stands.

Gary Dobson, 36, and David Norris, 35, received life sentences at the Old Bailey today for the racist murder of Mr Lawrence nearly 19 years ago.

The court has heard that a gang of five or six white youths set upon the A-level student in Eltham, south east London, in 1993.

Dobson, who is already serving a five-year sentence for drug-dealing, was sentenced to at least 15 years and two months.

Norris was given a minimum of 14 years and three months for the murder, which the judge said was a "terrible and evil crime".

Mr Lawrence's father Neville told reporters outside court that he hoped the pair would "give up the rest of the people" involved.

His mother Doreen said the sentences were "quite low", but she appreciated the judge's hands were tied and she would now "start moving on".

In court, Mr Justice Treacy called forward Detective Chief Inspector Clive Driscoll, who has been the senior officer in the case for a number of years.

He told him that the public inquiry into the circumstances surrounding Mr Lawrence's death had "shamed and humbled" the Met, but praised the hard work done in recent years.

The judge went on: "At least a measure of justice has been achieved at last. However, the convictions of Gary Dobson and David Norris will not, I hope, close the file on this murder. On the evidence before the court, there are still three or four other killers of Stephen Lawrence at large.

"Just as advances in science have brought two people to justice, I hope the Metropolitan Police will be alert to future lines of inquiry, not only based on developments in science but perhaps also information from those who have been silent so far, wherever they may be."

Earlier, he had sentenced Dobson and Norris in a packed but silent courtroom.

He called the killing "a terrible and evil crime", and quoted the Lord Chief Justice who called it a "murder which scarred the conscience of the nation".

Mr Justice Treacy told the pair: "A totally innocent 18-year-old youth on the threshold of a promising life was brutally cut down in the street in front of eyewitnesses by a racist, thuggish gang.

"You were both members of that gang. I have no doubt at all that you fully subscribed to its views and attitudes."

He said the murder was committed "for no other reason than racial hatred".

The evidence in the trial could not prove who wielded the knife, but he said that whoever used it had done so with Dobson and Norris's "knowledge and approval".

Neither of them had shown "the slightest regret or remorse" since the murder and they had both lied to the court.

When it was over, Dobson left speedily, stepping over Norris who had bent down to pick up his papers.

Norris then kissed his hand and offered it up to the public gallery in a thumbs-up sign before he too was led from the court.

As the judge rose to leave, a few people began clapping in the public gallery.

Dobson's father, Stephen, called down to the court: "Shame on all of you."

It is understood that a decision will be made on whether to keep the men at Belmarsh prison, in south east London, where Norris has previously been beaten up.

PA

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in