Three 16-year-olds found guilty of killing Mikey

THREE teenage boys will be sentenced next month after being found guilty of killing 16-year-old Mikey Roynon, from Kingswood,  at a birthday party in Bath last summer.

Mikey was stabbed in the back of neck with a so-called zombie knife following an incident in the back garden of a house in the Weston area of the city on 10 June.

He died at the scene.

Jurors at Bristol Crown Court were asked to determine whether a 16-year-old boy had murdered Mikey or whether they accepted his claim of self-defence.

They were also asked to consider whether the boy’s two friends, also both aged 16, who were also charged with
joint enterprise murder, were equally responsible for his death.

None of the three boys chose to give evidence in their defence during the trial although jurors were told one of the boys admitted stabbing Mikey but claimed it was after he had swung a knife towards his friends.

Two of these friends were his two co-accused. Jurors were told they too were armed with substantial knives and were jointly responsible for the attack on Mikey.

After a trial lasting five-and-a-half weeks, the jury concluded the boy who stabbed Mikey was guilty of murder and his two friends were guilty of manslaughter.

A witness, one of the teenagers at the party, told the court he thought Mikey himself may have had a knife at the time he was stabbed, although he was only 60 per cent sure.

However, Mikey did not have a knife on him when he died and detectives found no other evidence in support of this claim.

The three boys had travelled to the party from the Wiltshire area. Two of them admitted taking knives with them but the third denied it.

However, CCTV from the bus was played to the court which showed what detectives believe was a large knife down his trousers, casting doubt on his account.

The boy was initially treated as a witness until police recovered a knife with both his and Mikey’s DNA on. His clothes were also later forensically examined and found to have Mikey’s blood on.

As well as finding this boy guilty of manslaughter, the jury also found him guilty of possessing a bladed article.

All three will be sentenced at the same court on 3 May.

Detective Inspector Mark Newbury, the senior investigating officer, said: “That three boys armed themselves with knives to go to a teenage girl’s 16th birthday party is utterly unconscionable.

“Mikey went to that party to socialise and to have a good time. Instead, he was attacked with a horrifying weapon, suffered a catastrophic injury and tragically lost his life.

“Mikey was a much loved teenage boy and his family have been left totally devastated. They have shown incredible bravery and have courageously spoken out against knife crime since his death, which is something they should never have to do.

“Since Mikey’s death other young lives have been lost across our policing area and as a result we have launched a proactive operation to tackle and disrupt serious violence and knife crime involving young people.

“However, we know police enforcement alone won’t solve the problem and we’re working with our local authority partners, our colleagues in education and health and the Violence Reduction Partnership to identify the root causes and divert young people away from  criminality.”