Josh Hanson murder: Mother of Kingsbury man makes first year anniversary appeal to catch his killer
09:55 11 October 2016
The mother of a Kingsbury man murdered in an ‘unprovoked and motiveless’ attack has made a renewed appeal to catch his killer on the first anniversary of his death.
Josh Hanson was with his girlfriend and pals inside the RE Bar in Eastcote when his killer walked up to him and stabbed in the neck on October 11 last year at around 1.10am.
Detectives investigating his murder have named Shane O’Brien as a person they would like to speak and are offering a £20,000 reward for information leading to his arrest and prosecution.
Since his death Mr Hanson’s mother Tracey and sister Brooke have launched a campaign to find O’Brien with wanted posters featuring his face posted all over the world through their network of friends and the power of social media.
His mother said: “It is a year since Josh was murdered in an unprovoked knife attack.
“While we have continued to move forward to do all we can to help assist the police in their endeavours to catch his murderer, we have also worked tirelessly to raise awareness of our Facebook page, the justice for Josh Hanson campaign, and raise awareness of knife crime and knife crime prevention.
“Josh was known for his kindness and light-hearted attitude and these are very much the qualities we will strive to carry on in his memory. However, while we try to do all we can to leave a positive legacy for Josh we have the extremely painful and heartbreakingly sad reality that Josh is no longer a part of our family.
“Every second, minute or hour of the day that passes is filled with the pain that we have still not had the justice for Josh that he so rightly deserves.”
O’Brien is believed to have fled to Holland but is now thought to be hiding in Dubai.
The 27-year-old, who lived in Ladbroke Grove, has been named as one of the UK’s most wanted men.
He is 6ft with grey eyes and short dark brown hair and has a distinctive tattoo on his back that says ‘Shannon 15-04-06’.
He could be using the name Troy O’Brien.
Ms Hanson continued: “Brooke, myself, our family, friends and the many thousands of people who help us daily ask you to come forward if you have any information which would lead to an arrest.
“No matter how small you think this information may be we beg you to get in touch with the Met Police or Crimestoppers and help us put an end to the nightmare we are living with every day and have been for the last 12 months.”
Detective Chief Inspector Noel McHugh, who is leading the murder hunt, said: “It has now been a year since Josh’s murder and my team have spent this time carrying out extensive enquiries.
“O’Brien was quickly named as someone we urgently needed to trace and we have tracked his movements across Europe and then to Dubai where we believe he still is.
“Clearly he is being helped by others to evade police and has the ability to move around without using his own identity but we have a substantial reward available for anyone who can provide information that brings him before the courts.
“If you know anything - even if you think your information is small and insignificant - please come forward.
“Josh’s family have been so strong but they need to see the person who killed him brought to justice. As time goes on they are finding the situation desperately difficult and we really need the public’s help to find O’Brien.”
Anyone with information should call the incident room on 020 8785 8099 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Two men aged 24 and 29 arrested on suspicion of perverting the course of justice and assisting an offender have been bailed pending further enquires.