Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Echoes of Stephen Lawrence - The murder of Anthony Walker

From the Independent "The killing of Anthony: The boy who died because of the colour of his skin"

"Mrs Walker spoke of her "broken heart" yesterday after she watched a teenager with a history of racist behaviour convicted of the murder which has taken her son from her. The murder, caused by a single blow to the head with a 2ft ice axe, has drawn comparisons with the death in 1993 of Stephen Lawrence and was committed, the jury in Liverpool was told, "for no reason other than the colour of his skin". After an eight-day trial, the jury convicted 17-year-old Michael Barton of murdering Mr Walker on 29 July by supplying the axe and provoking a confrontation in which a torrent of racial insults including "niggers" and "coons" were hurled at him and his cousin, Marcus Binns. Barton's cousin Paul Taylor, 20, had already admitted wielding the axe as Mr Walker, aged 18, his white girlfriend Louise Thompson and Mr Binns walked through a park in Huyton, Merseyside, in an attempt to escape the confrontation. ... "How can you mend a broken heart?" Mrs Walker asked. "You can't imagine children you watched playing in the school playground [killing your own son]. They played together, they stood in the same dinner queue.

"I believe that all kids are innocent and something went wrong along the way, and what it is I don't know. Someone planted a seed of hate in their minds." She insisted that it was the role of parents to prevent that happening. "Mothers and fathers blame teachers these days," she said. "But it is parents who should teach the respect and train their children. more


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