Police and Asian community in show of unity after killing

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POLICE have today vowed to catch the killers of 17-year-old Ross Parker who was brutally stabbed to death.

POLICE have today vowed to catch the killers of 17-year-old Ross Parker who was brutally stabbed to death.POLICE have today vowed to catch the killers of 17-year-old Ross Parker who was brutally stabbed to death.

Ross was murdered as he walked home from a pub with a 19-year-old female friend.

As they walked along a cycle path by Bourges Boulevard, he was set upon by a gang of youths.

A post mortem examination has revealed he died from stab wounds caused by a "bladed instrument".

The gang were all believed to be Asian, and the possibility the attack was racially-motivated has not yet been ruled out.

Today, Asian community leaders in the city said they were appalled at the senseless killing of the teenager, and vowed to stand shoulder to shoulder with police.

Ghulam Shabbir, the chairman of the Pakistan Community Association, said: "We are offering the police our total support, and are continuing to work with officers in order to find out who is responsible for this callous attack.

"The community is horrified and appalled, and will do all that we can to help."

Chief Superintendent Mark Hopkins, of Peterborough police, said: "We are being given the utmost support from the community, and are united in our efforts to find those responsible for this wicked and cowardly attack.

"We are only interested in finding those people responsible for a young mans brutal murder, and will not rest until they are caught."

More than 60 police officers are already working on the case. They were today expected to concentrate on the murder scene, a cyclepath near Harris Street on the Gladstone Street side of Bourges Boulevard, in the hunt for clues, and to continue house-to-house inquires in the area.

Superintendent David Hankins, who is leading the murder investigation codenamed, Operation Fossgate, said: "As a result of the post mortem we now know some sort of bladed instrument was used in this callous and unprovoked attack."

Ross worked at the Solstice nightspot in Northminster, Peterborough, and was walking home with a female workmate after a late-night shift when he was attacked at 1.15am.

The girl ran to get help, flagging down a passing police patrol car, but, by the time she returned with officers, just minutes later, he was dead and his attackers had vanished.

>> Anyone with information should call detectives at the incident room at Thorpe Wood police station on 01733 563232, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Street gang fear is rife in Central ward

RESIDENTS of the citys Central ward today said its streets are ruled by gangs of thugs.

They told The Evening Telegraph that threats of violence and arson attacks were a fact of life in the area.

Mohammed Younis (37), neighbourhood watch co-ordinator in the Gladstone Street area, has been the victim of arson attacks which he believes were triggered by his attempts to battle crime in the ward.

"Theres a lot of gangs in the area and many people would say this attack has been threatening to happen for a while," he said.

"Police have not taken the fires and attacks in the area seriously enough.

"Im living in fear for myself and my family.

"Action is needed, or this situation will only get worse."

A community worker in the area, who asked not to be named, said: "There seem to be more and more gangs on the streets around here white as well as Asian."

Ward councillor Raja Akhtar added: "People need to be careful when they go out these are clearly dangerous people."

Leslie Harris (46), of Dyson Close, said: "My wife and I feel really scared, especially after what happened to this poor young lad.

"In the three years we have been here, our kitchen windows have been smashed three times, and even my pigeons have been killed.

"Gangs of lads sit on the wall outside our house. It feels intimidating and we have been personally threatened many times.

"We want to leave the area as soon as possible. Its just not a safe place to live."

"Some people dont want to set foot outside their door at night.

" I have lived here for over 30 years and I have never heard of anything quite this bad."