Girl scout Jodie Chesney was stabbed to death in front of her boyfriend by a drugs gang trying to earn respect in a ‘pathetic’ turf war, a court heard.
Jodie, 17, was knifed in the back as she listened to music with friends at a park in Harold Hill, east London, on March 1.
The stabbing left the sixth form student bleeding heavily as her friends battled in vain to save her around 9:20pm.
Despite the efforts of a local resident, paramedics and police, Jodie was pronounced dead on the floor of Esso Garage petrol station in Gants Hill an hour later.
Croatian Manuel Petrovic, 20, Svenson Ong-a-Kwie, 19, and two boys, aged 16 and 17, who cannot be named, deny her murder.
Jodie, 17, was stabbed to death while playing music in a park with friends close to St Neot’s Road, Harold Hill, in Romford, east London, on March 1
Prosecutor Crispin Aylett QC told the Old Bailey that Jodie’s father has described her as a ‘beautiful, well-liked, fun, young woman who judged no-one and loved everyone.’
‘So, the prosecution suggest that Jodie is unlikely to have been the intended target; more likely is that the intended target was somebody else altogether.
‘The drug-dealing world is one of turf-wars, rivalries and pathetic claims for respect. And when drug-dealers fall out, they do not take their problems to the police.
‘Instead, they take matters into their own hands, and they are prepared to use serious violence in order to prove whatever point it is they wish to make.’
Prosecutors claim Petrovic drove Ong-a-Kwie and the two boys to the scene in his black Vauxhall Corsa.
All four were all involved in drug dealing and some of them had dealt drugs to Jodie’s friends, the Old Bailey heard.
Manuel Petrovic (left) and Svenson Ong-a-kwie (right) both deny Jodie’s murder
At about 9.20pm, Jodie’s boyfriend noticed two figures coming out of the darkness noiselessly towards them.
He saw the taller of the pair swing his right arm at Jodie’s back, the Old Bailey heard.
Jodie screamed and the two figures disappeared into the darkness, jurors were told.
She had suffered a deep wound to her back which bled heavily.
A local resident heard her screams and came to help as Jodie’s friends became ‘hysterical’, jurors heard.
By the time an ambulance arrived, she showed no signs of life and was pronounced dead en route to hospital on the forecourt of a petrol station.
Prosecutor Crispin Aylett QC told jurors that none of Jodie’s friends had any idea who was responsible for the ‘terrible and cowardly’ attack.
Jodie Chesney’s mother Joanne (left) and father Peter arrives at court today ahead of the trial of two men and two youths accused of her murder
Lucy Chesney, Jodie’s sister, was also seen arriving at the Old Bailey this morning
Following national publicity, police got a ‘breakthrough’ when a witness reported two males getting into a stationary black Vauxhall Corsa.
Mr Aylett said but for the ‘chance sighting’ Jodie’s murder might have gone unsolved.
A couple of hours after the killing, a black Corsa registered to the defendant Manuel Petrovic was found abandoned about two miles away, he said.
Following his arrest, Petrovic admitted driving to Harold Hill with a friend and two others who had gone into the park to collect money and drugs.
He denied knowing the pair were armed beforehand, the court heard.
Investigators identified Petrovic’s friend and the two others through CCTV footage and mobile phone data, jurors heard.
Croatian Manuel Petrovic, 20, Svenson Ong-a-Kwie, 19, and two boys, aged 16 and 17, who cannot be named, deny her murder and appeared in the dock today.