A teen was sentenced to less than seven years in prison after leading a mob of five to chase and kill a 14-year-old Black boy in England.
According to news reports, the 15-year-old was convicted of manslaughter at the Birmingham crown court on May 6 but was acquitted of murder. He will serve six years and seven months for killing Dea-John Reid.
The four other individuals involved in the all-white mob attack–George Khan, 39, Michael Shields, 36, a 16-year-old, and another 15-year-old–were cleared of murder and punished with manslaughter convictions as well.
“If an adult did what you did, it would almost certainly be murder, and they would be sentenced to life imprisonment,” Birmingham Crown Court Justice Johnson told the unnamed teen. He initially claimed self-defense, but a jury rejected his plea.
Reid was “hunted” down by a group of white men and teenagers back in May 2021, who shouted racial epithets at him before he was fatally stabbed in the chest. He died at the scene.
Video footage captured on CCTV showed his killer chasing him along with four others in what his mom, Joan Morris, described as a “lynch mob reminiscent of a scene from Mississippi Burning.” Her son’s attackers were reportedly armed with a wrench and a large kitchen knife,
In the disturbing footage, the 15-year-old group leader was also seen wearing a balaclava, also known as a ski mask and gloves. He and the angry mob allegedly carried out a “revenge attack” in retaliation to a previous incident in which the teen reportedly attempted to rob the 16-year-old in the group.
Justice Johnson noted that Reid “stood no chance” against the violent all-white mob, pointing out that the Black British boy was “unarmed” and, therefore, not a “threat.”
“He was unarmed. He was no threat to you. The CCTV shows that there was a concerted chase of Dea-John, which was led by you,” Johnson said to the boy’s murderer.
Morris expressed her disappointment in the trial verdict regarding her son’s death via a recent statement.
“The verdict of manslaughter, while all the others are found not guilty, just goes to prove to me that the life of Dea-John Reid, my son, a young Black man, doesn’t matter,” she said. “I was told that justice will prevail, and I put my trust in the system, but I do sincerely believe that this system has let me down.”
Last year, the grieving mother cried in front of reporters, telling them she loved her son “so much.”
“They took away my son’s life. My son doesn’t get to grow up to give me a grandchild. I love him so much.”
The grief stricken mother of 14 year old #DeaJohnReid who was stabbed here in Birmingham on Monday night.
— Nathan Lee (@NathanLeeTV) June 3, 2021