17 year old boy dies from gunshot in Southwark as London weapon crime escalates dramatically

Rhyhiem Ainsworth Barton, 17 was found dead in Warham Street, Southwark on Saturday 5th of May. At 18:05 police were called after gunshot noises were heard from Cooks Road.

Barton was playing football with some friends when he got shot, the London Ambulance Services provided first aid on the scene. He was pronounced dead at 18:56hrs.

His careers were informed very soon after and his mother Pretana Morgan said she “she couldn’t have asked for a better son”.

Morgan told reports Rhyhiem Barton was an aspirational architect “trying to make a difference” as he was learning to work with children “my son’s a good boy”, the family lives together with the six-year-old sister of Rhyhiem.

London gun and weapon crime have escalated, from 2016 to 2017 the number of cases went up from 2,193 to 2,542 according to the Metropolitan Police data. Lethal gun firings have increased by approximately 20 percent since 2012.

Knife and gun crimes were described as “dissporportionatey concentrated” in London and other metropolitan areas by the Office National Statistics. Overall there was a decline in gun crime until 2014, since then the numbers have been heavily increasing.  

Sadiq Khan, mayor of London is urged by the public to consider a new strategy to tackle gun crime, considering the latest statistics and fears the predators and victims are reducing in age at a high rate. According to assembly’s report around one-third of victims of gun crime and almost three in five offenders were aged under 25 in the twelve months to October 2017.

More crimes like the shooting in Southwark are happening in greater areas of London although involving more serious crimes. Drug dealing and gang activity are identified as the main drivers of gun crime, gangs accounting for nearly half of all offenses where very lethal guns were fired.

Speaking to Victoria Rose a plastic surgeon working for the NHS she said since 2015 more and more patients are being submitted due to gun or knife wounds. “I’m starting to get a large number of injured teens who have been injured by illegal weapons”.