|Tributes on Rylett Road|
This is a man who tackled a burglar coming out of a house he would never have been able to afford in a million years, but had such a deep sense of right and wrong he was prepared to defend the property of people many times wealthier than him. He paid for that goodness with his life.
I can also tell you this evening that the police have, this afternoon, made six arrests. One man is in custody on suspicion of murder while five others are charged with assisting an offender. Here's what the police have just told me:
A street cleaner who was stabbed after trying to stop a burglar from getting away in west London has died from his injuries.You can read more here
The man, aged 40, died in St Mary’s Hospital Paddington earlier today, Thursday 30 August. Although police believe they know the man’s identity, we await formal identification.
At approx 13:50hrs on Wednesday 29 August, police were called to Rylett Road, W12, regarding an assault.
A man had suffered a stab wound to the torso.
The deceased is from Eastern Europe - exact nationality awaits.
A post-mortem examination date and venue to be arranged.
Five people have been arrested today in connection with the incident.
[A] a man aged 30 was arrested on suspicion of murder. He is currently in custody at a central London police station.
Two other men [B and C] and three women [D, E and F] have all been arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender.
I have to say on a personal note today has been a difficult day but also a reassuring one. Difficult given the truly awful news about what was clearly a man with more bravery inside him than most of us will ever have, but reassuring having seen something of the way in which the police were going about their investigation.
|Reassurance patrols are underway|
So there we have it. A truly dark 48 hours in the history of Shepherd’s Bush.
One man who came here from the other side of Europe in order to work hard and provide for his family, and who didn’t just sweep those streets but cared enough about the people who lived on them, most of whom he never got to meet, to the point where he would fight to protect their property has lost his life.
People like him are both very rare and utterly irreplaceable, and we have all lost as a result.
|Today's headlines are soon gone|
Much will be written about this incident in the days and weeks to come. It’s right up most journalists’ street, so you can expect to see lots of “have a go hero” headlines and the rest. I would hope that whatever does get written is done with respect and dignity for Piotr and his family, and that includes the language that is used about the incident itself.
For the rest of us it’s time to reflect. The incident was a one-off and it doesn’t represent what happens in our area. There’s no danger to the public. We can take some reassurance that the police have done what they are there to do, and done it well.
But, for the time being at least, we can only mourn the passing of someone who represented everything that is good about decent people, and was prepared to fight for what was right. Rest in Peace, Piotr.