Black Looks - Including an African LGBTIQ+ Archive

Action Alert, Britain, London

RIP: Darren Deslandes

January 1st 2016 UPDATE 

In July 2015, the Deslandes family launched the Darren Deslandes Peacemaker Foundation in honor of their son and brother Darren who was murdered on January 1st, 2010.

The main aim is to assist families of the departed victims of major crime and also create training programs to enrich the development of youths in the community.’

The two aims areCURE: The core purpose of the cure will be to assist and support the families of victims of major crimes; PREVENTION: The focus will be on trying to prevent young people from engaging in serious violent crime and will be achieved by using various techniques through our ‘Enrichment Summer Camp.

Please do consider supporting the DDL Foundation either in volunteering your time or donations.  Thank you on behalf of the Deslandes family and friends.

 

Darren

PRESS RELEASE JANUARY 7TH, 2010

The Deslandes family is issuing this press release in order to set the record straight regarding their family and the events surrounding the cowardly shooting which left 34yr old Darren Deslandes dead and his 25yr old brother, Wintworth [Junior] Deslandes,  remains in the Critical Care Unit.

This is a well educated, hardworking, upstanding and loving family who have provided a foster home for nine children.  Darren Deslandes was a Leasehold Housing Officer for SLFHA (formerly known as a South London Family Housing Association) for whom he was employed for ten  years.  Junior Deslandes worked in the family pub, the Newton Arms.  Darren attended Dulwich College for his GCSEs, Richmond Upon Thames College for A-levels, and to Brunnel  University.  Junior attended Trinity School Croydon and works as an Estate Agent as well as at the family pub.    Neither Darren nor Junior have ever been arrested, nor have either of them ever had a shred of involvement with any violent or criminal behavior.

Darren and Junior Deslandes are the children of Wintworth, Sr. and  Lurline Deslandes.  Wintworth, Sr. worked in the City for 25 years as an insurance underwriter.  In 1999  Mr. and Mrs. Deslandes bought and became pub landlords of the Newton Arms in Queen’s Road, Thornton Heath.  They turned the then-struggling Newton Arms into a popular and well-loved community pub renowned for its family atmosphere. A friendly place that was a home away from home for regular patrons who were of all ages and races.  “Was” because now that has all been destroyed by a callous act of senseless violence by what can only be described as a devout coward.

The Deslandes family hosted a private party to celebrate New Year’s Eve this year with extended family, friends and pub regulars, all of who were welcome to bring guests.  Unfortunately, one regular patron brought his nephew with him, the man who later murdered Darren in cold blood and has left Junior fighting for his life.

The night had proceeded with festive cheer until around 4am on New Year’s Day.  The Murderer was arguing with another guest who was attending the party when Junior attempted to calm the situation.  The Murderer picked up a bottle to hit Junior so Darren and Junior forcibly removed him from the pub, at which point he ran to a vehicle and drove off quickly.  Not liking the manner in which the Murderer ran off, Wintworth, Sr. immediately announced that the pub was closed and everyone should promptly exit the establishment in case the angry young man returned.

Before all the guests had left, and while the Deslandes family were still locking and cleaning up, the Murderer returned asking where his uncle was.  Darren and Junior, with their family standing behind them, repeatedly informed him that his uncle had left and that he should go home.  The Murderer then pulled out a gun.  Darren and Junior attempted to grab his arms to prevent him from firing the gun on their family and pushed the Murderer to the front door where the Murderer managed to turn the gun on them and shot Darren in the head and the shoulder and Junior in the head, neck and shoulder.  The Murderer fled towards the back of the pub when Wintworth, Sr. attempted to stop him with a broken bottle.  The Murderer pointed the gun directly at Wintworth, Sr. and pulled the trigger but there were no more bullets, so he struck Wintworth, Sr. with the gun butt and fled out the back.

At this point, Darren had stopped breathing and Wintworth, Sr. successfully resuscitated him before rushing over to attend to Junior, who was barely breathing.  Then Darren started choking on his own blood and Wintworth Sr. was unable to resuscitate him again.

Darren’s fiancés, Abigail, had called the police immediately after the Murder brandished his gun.  When they arrived, they prevented the paramedics from entering the pub for 30 minutes, claiming that they wanted to make sure the premises were secure despite everyone in the pub telling the police that the Murderer had fled out of the back of the pub.  Darren, already deceased, was taken off by the ambulance first.  Junior was not taken off by the ambulance until a full hour after he was shot.  Neither of the men’s parents were allowed to accompany their sons in the ambulance.

The family is disgusted at the spiteful, heartless behaviour of the police when they arrived.  They treated the whole family like they were criminals and stood by emotionless as Junior slipped into a coma.  In addition to contributing to the worsening of Junior’s condition, they have caused the Deslandes family unnecessary additional heartache by feeding the rabid, racist elements in the tabloid press with their treatment of the victims of this tragedy.

The Sun ran a disgraceful article packed with lies, describing the crime as a “wild west shoot out.” The Deslandes family formally demand a full apology from the Sun and a full retraction of the cruel lies they have spread about the Murder of one innocent, law abiding young man and the attempted murder of another .  Wintworth and Leline have a third son, James, age 13.  He witnessed the Murder of his eldest brother.  His other brother is fighting for his life and his parents are irreconcilably devastated.

At this time, the Cowardly Murderer has not been caught.  The conduct of the police so far has been immeasurably disrespectful and offensive to the victims of this terrible crime.  They even went as far as using deceit to isolate 13 yr old James in order to inform him his eldest brother was dead and to question him about the shooting without his parents present.  The family can only feel pity and shame for whoever made the decision to treat a 13 yr old like this, let alone for allowing gunshot victims to drown in their own blood.  The same goes for every officer who obeyed these decisions.  The very least the police can do at this time is catch the coward who committed this vicious and unprovoked crime and convict him.

This family has been broken into pieces.  They’ve lost one son and the other is fighting for his life.  They cannot continue to live and work in their pub.  This is a tragedy for the family, their friends and the whole community.  One thing we do know to be true is that Darren and Junior Deslandes are heroes to their family and friends — they put themselves on the line and Darren lost his life in protecting his family while Junior’s life is hanging in the balance.

The Deslandes family wish to express their sincere gratitude to every single person who has expressed their support and condolences.  The family would also like to ask everyone to continue to pray for Junior to have a full recovery and for Wintworth, Lurliine, Abigail and James to somehow find a way to put their lives back together.

R.I.P. Darren Deslandes — 11th July 1975 — 1st January 2010

UPDATE: Today Friday 8th January, a man was charged, 30 year old Lobsang Hassan, with the murder of Darren as well as two counts of attempted murder and related gun offences.

141 Comments

  1. Abena Eniola

    Oh my days. RIP to Darren, and my heart go out to the family. I’m so disgusted to read that the police did not allow the paramedics to attend to an critically injured person. It’s too shocking for words.

  2. Abena Eniola

    Please Please ensure this press release gets to all the media.

  3. caz

    Im so shocked!! how the heck does anyone try to get there head around this, if you ever you do..its disgusting, how our police force could of acted like this, from what ive read there, theres alot questions that need answering.

  4. Han

    I am lost for words. I cant believe what has happened and the way the Police behaved when they attended. What were they thinking? another black gangster who deserved to die???? well, anyone that met Darren even once would know thats its the total opposite. I can say this objectivly because I wasnt ‘best mates’ with Darren but I worked with him for 2 years, and he was brilliant at what he did. He treated everyone politley and with respect and I dont think anyone could say a bad word against him. I am so sorry that the Deslandes family have had to go through the extra pain and trauma of not getting help for Darren and his brother when they needed it. It just makes the whole thing more heartbreaking. I am praying that all of Darren’s family and friends get through this terrible time. I dont know them, but no-one deserves this…. RIP Darren.

  5. Chade

    I cannot believe the disgusting behaviour of the very people who encourage us to go to them for help. I went to uni with Junior and worked at the pub with him and Darren and the family and they are well loved and known by the whole community. It sickened me to find out what had happened to such loving and pure people. How dare the media portray this as gang related and other foolishness. As if the family didnt have enough to deal with, they have to fight for their reputations against people that didnt even know them.

  6. Sue

    You cannot begin to imagine how Mr and Mrs Deslandes are feeling right now. To lose such a gentleman such as Darren and to not know if Junior will pull through. It is just too sad for words. I am not remotely surprised at how the press have portrayed Darren and his wonderful family. The media are totally responsible for the stupid attitude some people in the country have towards the afro-caribbean community. The Police tar everyone with the same brush… it’s obvious that they jumped to the wrong conclusion too soon.. judging everyone the same. I dont want to turn this into a big thing about race.. it’s about a loving family who have suffered the most terrible loss. If any good can come from this then lets pull together as a community, be proud of what we have achieved. We are lawyers, accountants, housing officers, doctors nurses… we are everything.. we are one. God bless the Deslandes family. They have made a thousand new friends and more. RIP Darren. Junior keep strong and pull through my friend. xx

  7. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Sus@ You are right – We are everything and we are one. If this pulls us together then something good and decent has come of this terrible tragedy.
    Thanks to all the comments which will be passed on to the Deslandes family.

  8. Andy

    As an old classmate of Darren’s when he was at Dulwich I am so shocked by this callous and heinous crime which has devastated the Deslandes family. I cannot begin to imagine what the family are going through at this time especially considering the treatment that Darren, Junior and their family have received from the police and media since it happened. As someone else stated earlier, some serious questions will be asked because They were and are decent law abiding citizens and both the police and the media will need to answer those questions. Please make sure this doesn’t get swept under the carpet because they deserve better than that. Black or White, no-one deserves this

  9. Amanda

    RIP Darren. My soul prays for Junior’s recovery and sympathy for the Deslandes family.
    A law abiding, diligent citizen life has gone, whilst the media tarnishes everyone with the same brush. It is shocking that the police prevented the paramedics. They ought to be accountable for their criminal behaviour.

  10. Remyred

    Rip darren

  11. A concerned member of society

    I personally know some of the people involved in this and I work for the authorities so I can see dual sides of the spectrum. What is outlined reads detrimental to say the least, however at the very end of the investigation as per policy a huge debrief will take place and all actions before, during and after will be assessed evaluated and accounted for. Since the Stephen Lawrence murder racism is a high priority and any officer found to be acting in that manner especially in such a serious case as this will be dealt with accordingly. What doesnt help is when people throw out heated and stereotypical negative comments on forums such as this. We need more ethnic people actually working for and with the organisations not just bad mouthing from the outside, that is what tars us with the same brush, they need to see us as educated and respectable people not thugs and street gangsters. The paramedics actually have a policy A- not to enter pubs alone and B- to ensure they are free of risk prior to entering the pub. I have experienced numerous cases where people have died or were delayed help and although in this case everyone is blaming the police I can almost 100 percent guarantee that the paramedics policy to ensure they were not at risk is what caused this, Police are always asked to check out a violent scene before allowing them access this is a paramedic and not a police policy! although the witnesses said they had left, the police would not have known that and if they allowed the medics to go in (who are unarmed) and then they got killed that would have instigated a whole new argument!, And again the article says the police were emotionless, sadly that is how they are trained to be, they cant afford to allow their emotions to obscure the need to investigate a serious crime, I cant say I agree with what they do and have examples of their bad behaviour even in my own family, but what needs to happen is us as a race need to start training as lawyers, solicitors and police and actually leading by example, as for the media, they will never care, their aim is to sell papers and scandal sells, they are not or never will be concerned about the true feelings of people. I think we need to pray for my friend Juniors recovery and justice to prevail, I personally like to see all the evidence before flaring up at articles,there are two sides and from what I have read above even I have questions, such as was Darren not placed in the recovery position? also in terms of isolating the child, again what are the reasons for this?, soemtimes children have been able to solve murders! was it a policy or what? I cant condone their methods but it was a murder scene and police cant simply assume family were not involved just because they were family, (I mean in general not this case) sadly their methods in these situations are robust, and on the outside it appears unnecessary but I sometimes think personal and emotional decisions will always cloud that of someone that is not emotionally connected, i’m not agreeing or blaming as this is sad for all, the inquest is the final stance! God sees all and he will repay!

  12. A concerned member of society

    exactly, from what you have read here!!! thats the problem we need to see all the evidence to make an informed judgement. I just pray junior gets better and fast!

  13. A concerned member of society

    Its not that the police never let them, its that the paramedics actually call the police to ensure the entire scene is safe before letting them in, they cant take the word of the people in there as they dont know who the killer is. there was a case recently where a woman died in a pub from cardiac arrest whilst the paramedic waited outside, people screamed at the paramedic to come and help but it was her safety policy that she never entered a pub alone. You will find much of this is about health and safety policies from the ambulance service. If they go in and get shot then thats a whole new drama in itself.

  14. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    I understand that a crime scene needs to be safe and secure but the police also need to use their iniative and make appropriate decisions based on the level of emergency medical care needed and the overall situation and act in a sensitive manner. Then again if the police behave with assumptions based their own stereotyping then this cannot be relied on and one cannot expect people to feel safe.

    To write that people have died because paramedics are not allowed into pubs infers there is a serious problem here. Now I know if I have a heart attack, choke over a fish bone or a stroke in a pub not to expect anything more than to die waiting!

    I see no conflict between the act of policing a crime and being sensitive to victims of crimes and showing they care. In fact I think it is an essential part of their role and if they are not able to do that then they are in the wrong job!

    You are right about the media – but that does not mean that kind of behaviour is written in stone and we should all remain complacent. The way some of the media behave and report is not acceptable. One of the greatest disservice we as a community can do to ourselves is to “get used to it” – sit back and say oh thats how it is and do nothing. With that attitude we would still be colonized and enslaved.

    As for Black people training as lawyers, doctors etc. Where have you been? Both Darren and Junior are educated to university level. There are plenty of us who are skilled craftspeople, technicians, professionals, academics etc. More to the point would be why are many of us with these qualifications under employed or unemployed?

    As children solving crimes – of course they can but this has to be done in the presence of their parents or an agreed guardian.

    The question about Darren’s position is not worthy of an answer!

  15. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    I am amazed that you write as if this is acceptable. See my previous comment – Remind me not to have a heart attack or go into labour in a pub!

  16. Lee Jasper

    As the former Policy Director of Policing for London and a ardent campaigner for some 14 years against gun crime
    I felt both sickened and very angry about this case. I offer my sincere condolences to the family. We have never met but in reading this account my heart goes out to the family. If I can be of any assitance to the family in any way please do not hesitate to contact me. Whatever the cirmcumstances I would expect that the police would have treated the family with proffesionalism, sensitivity and compassion. The question for me, assuming the version of events as described here are correct, is would a similar crime visited upon a middle class family in Londons suburbia be treated in the same way? In relation to the Paramedics there is no evidence that when attending such crimes scenes they have been the victims of gun violence. I’m not aware of a single case of this happening. A policy can be changed and where there is complellibg evidence that lives could have been saved then that policy should be constantly revised . Jus

  17. A terrible and all too familiar story. My condolences to the family. Rest in peace Darren. Let us hope something, some kind of justice and peace emerges from all this violence, from men with guns and, even more, from States without hearts

  18. Anextracoldguinnessplease

    I take this opportunity to extend my condolences to the entire Deslandes family at the loss of their son Darren and to join together with everyone praying that Junior may survive this incident.

    To say that I know or am known to the Deslandes family would be stretching reality, and so at this moment in time when the horrible, numbing truth of this incident is heart-wrenchingly painful I will not make any such claims. Truth be told, I find that notwithstanding the facts I continue to hear a chorus of soundless screams in my shaking head – not wanting to believe – wishing that it is all a nightmare from which I will awaken. Alas that will not be the case and so I pray for justice and I pray that there will soon be some reasoning that will dawn upon the mind of man so that this inclination to violence will become a thing of the past.

    Over the few years during which I have been an occasional patron of the Newton Arms pub my presence there has always been acknowledged with courtesy, respect and unreserved warmth full of humane kindness. During this time I have observed mother, father, sons, grandmother, grandfather, nephews, nieces, cousins and employees diligently at work and sometimes light-heartedly at play on both sides of the bar – all in order to ensure that us patrons would know that the Newton Arms was forever our home away from home.

    It was the because of the love-filled efforts and duty of care of the Deslandes family that we drank peacefully; chatted amicably; danced with joyful abandon; talked cricket; played dominoes sometimes raucously but always good naturedly.

    And it is because of all this — and more that will one day be told — that I take this opportunity to extend my condolences to the entire Deslandes family at the loss of their son Darren and to join together with everyone praying that Junior may survive this incident. Jah bless!

  19. Dan

    Firstly, I want to send my condolences to the Deslandes family and all those who knew them. I knew Darren from school and liked him a lot.

    Secondly, turning on the police is wrong. It may seem ‘heartless’ but these procedures are in place to protect paramedics and police who are working day in and day out in unpredictable and violent situations. These people need our support not constant criticism. Race is not an issue – the same procedures would have been followed if the victim was white or asian. The man who killed Darren was the man with the gun not the police or paramedics.

    RIP Darren

  20. Dan

    Oh yes. That Sun article is disgraceful but I wouldn’t blame police for that. The Sun isn’t exactly known for its honest reporting.

  21. Wayne francis

    Thank you so much for this statement, there are so many accounts going around as to what happened.

    you are right, both sons are Heroes.

    Darren as i said before, u will be missed but never forgotten. you was taken away from us to early. it does not matter what people want to print. all that knew Darren knew he was not Inna any foolishness, study hard and worked even harder, a true role model.

    Love you man

    Bless

  22. Reality

    The Reality is the Police had the paramedics waiting outside the pub for up to 40 minutes before Junior was transported to the hospital. It does not take 40 minutes to ensure the pub is safe for paramedics. In this circumstance it took 5 minutes. The police stood there asking the family questions for 30+ mins while two gunshot victims laid in their own blood. The family have repeatedly stated that the police refused to let in the paramedics until they finished interrogating them. This had nothing to do with safety of the paramedics. There is no way this is acceptable and its offensive to suggest otherwise. There is absolutely no reason the police could not have let the paramedics in while questioning the family.

    The police are trained to remain emotionless? What a load of crap. A respectable policeman should behave in a professional manner while at the same time being sensitive to victims in these situations. They can walk around the community saying “hi” and organise 5-a-side football all they want, but as long as they continue to demonstrate that they don’t care about Black victims of violent crime at the crime scene, the black community will remain hostile to them and Black youth will just outright hate them.

    Finally, Mr. Concerned Member of Society, I think if you are going to make statements about needing black professionals when its undeniable that there are plenty, at least you could learn some basic grammar. Perhaps you should think before you write such nonsense.

  23. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Anextracoldguinnessplease @ Thank you for your comment on the atmosphere in the Newton Arms and the Deslandes family.

  24. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Reality@ My points exactly! Thank you

  25. Melissa Delicious

    OMG, I cannot believe what I have just read. My heart goes out to Mr & Mrs Deslandes at this difficult time.

    Whilst I understand police and paramedics health and safety policies, their main job is to protect, serve and save lives. The police do have to ensure the scene is safe enough for the paramedics to do their job, but it should not take even 10 mins to ascertain that the criminals are not present. With 2 dying victims on the floor surrounded by family members what gunman is going to stick around!

    At some point common sense needs to prevail over policies!

    I am going to add this to my blogsite

  26. Han

    Thank you Reality. I am quite offended by someone justifying the actions of ANYONE who clearly contributed to the pain and heartache of the Deslandes family. And it is totally innapropriate to do so here. This site should be for people to pay their respects to the loss of a young man who was taken by the actions of a villanous coward. To do otherwise, is hurtful to anyone who knew Darren.

  27. Velma Wright

    Another senseless shooting ….Absolutely disgusting behaviour by the police and paramedics…and The Sun Newspaper needs to officially apologise. (never buy it anyway it’s always full of lies)

    This guy needs to be caught asap someone must know where he is…..he is a disgrace to the community….

    RIP Darren, my thoughts and prayers are with the family and with the 13 year old brother -please do not lose heart your brothers are Heroes x

  28. Joanna

    I agree that this is the place for condolences and this is what i sincerely extend to the Deslandes family. This is a tragedy that no family should ever have to endure. The parents and brother and extended family of Darren and Junior have every reason to be eternally proud of them. It is the essence of these young men that led them to instinctively prevent a larger scale tragedy and to protect their family. RIP and prayers and love.

  29. Fred Cooke

    I am honouring the the request of the Desalandes family not comment on the crime.
    My observation is that the murderer, once caught and convicted will probabaly be sentanced to 200hrs community service. What a dreadfull mistake it was to discontinue Capital punishment.

  30. D Deslandes

    i am in pain and in complete loss. i am missing my cousin so much and always will xx

  31. j brown

    This article has been issued so people will have an understanding of what took place instead of reading and listening to what the media has to say or what they feel is relevant to publish. In no way is this a forum for people to cast blame and for people to use it as an open decision on who they feel should be blamed and what procedures are right or wrong. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion but there is a time and a place. As Darren and Jr are my two older cousins it would be nice to read messages of condolences to my family and not opinions of what procedures should have taken place. Words cant express how much i love and miss you darren your always in my mind and heart.. Jr im hoping and praying my you make a full recovery continous prayers cuz i love you so much.. xxx

  32. tammy

    R.I.P.Darren we will all be with you in thought and soul and we will never forget you….. I Cant you was the 1st bloke to tell me off when i was at jeannettes and nicks house lol xx I am sooooo disgusted in the way the Deslandes family have been treated it is unforgivable and if a paramedic could of gone in and saved a life we may not be writing this but we are and we still have junior to pray for soooo from now on junior my darling you have to fight hard but you can do it as you have a lot of family and friends to help you and not for getting your gorgeous baby get well soon my darling xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    love me xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  33. tammy

    i hope and pray justice gets served for this family as you deserve it xxxxxxxxxxx

  34. Reality

    It is not my intention to stir negativity on this forum or anywhere else. Furthermore, I don’t want my comments to be confused as police-bashing.

    I believe I made logical, well thought out points which demonstrate that in this incident, the police behaved terribly (let me add that I have also heard that some of the police who interviewed some of the pub patrons at the station were helpful and polite). Having said that, people who know more than me about police behaviour in these circumstances assure me that this is nothing new. Apparently, the family’s version of events reads like a broken record. This is apparently typical behaviour. I await those who know more than me about these things to weigh in with their opinions.

    I will reiterate for the sake of any police that may be reading this – there is no better way to improve race relations between minorities and the police than handling these situations with common sense and empathy. The victims families will go out of their way to thank you publicly, and the surrounding community will take note over time. Or you could just do the right thing because its the right thing. There – you have two good reasons to treat minorities like human beings.

    Quite frankly, I’d rather talk about Darren. He was the best friend anyone could ever ask for. He was always there for me, no matter what. I’m only now discovering that I am not unique. The tributes to him make it clear that the man was a beacon of light, bringing positivity for everyone he touched. Let’s make sure we honour him by bringing that positivity to his family during this terrible time for them. James especially needs the love of all Darren’s family and friends, not just now but for the rest of his life. Let’s do for James what Darren did for us all.

    D, I feel you pain. I really do. I fluctuate between flat out denial that Darren is gone to raging anger at the coward who murdered him to a heavy, heavy sadness.

    Stay strong Bruv. The body is dead but the Soul is eternal. We’ll all link up in the next life and you know with Darren, there will be nuff jokes.

  35. mark "krazie" london

    my heart goes out to the family, we lost a son,a brother uncle and a friend.
    Darren you left us a true BLACK HERO in your memory we live on knowing you passed doing what any honourable man would do die for his family. my prayers are with jnr hope for a speedy and full recovery I can only hope that the coward and i would like to write exactly what i think of it but time and place, could only show so sort of remorse and turn itself in. it does not deserve the right to be called human as it acted like the micro organism that lives on the lowest form of life that exsists

    @Sokari

  36. @Sokari
    We just have to pray that Junior makes a full recovery. Its unthinkable what happened at the scene but I have heard of incidents on the news where families blamed the slow response of the ambulance service for the death of their loved ones. I do believe in “fate” although it was a ruthless loss of life! Darren died trying to protect his family. If it wasnt his time, God would have find a way to let him survive. They have caught the cowardly criminal, painful as it is, we should focus on Darren’s good memories. Its difficult when anyone is grieving, i dont believe in all these policies as nothing is set in stone, if someone is dying, compassion must be shown!!As we are still fighting for equal opportunities, some people still see us as criminals and there are a handful of us in society, that is making it difficult for the rest of us like this senseless murderer trying to save “face”.

  37. This is such a tragic story. My condolences goes out to the family. What a dreadful thing to happen to their sons on the 1st day of the year. This is a tragedy for the whole community.

  38. sam

    This is such a sad story my heart goes out to the family an hope that Jnr makes a good recovery and that you get justice an the man who did this gets what he deserves xxx

  39. rodger reid

    in your memory we live on knowing you passed doing what any honourable man would do die for his family my prayers are with jnr hope for a speedy and full recovery
    my heart felt are with family , god bless you all

  40. Lurleen

    RIP Darren you and your brother are true hero’s. My heart goes out to the family and will pray for them. And for the the coward God pays debt without money.

  41. Joan from Birmingham

    This story has taken me on a roller coaster of emotions, ending in deep anger. Dear God have mercy!!! how are the police going to be held accountable for their CRIMINAL behaviour in this tragic event. HOW do they justify leaving these young men to die while interagating a distraught, child sibling who is eye witness to such a thing??? HOW? Has anything been achieved since the killing of Stephen Lawrence over a decade ago? we are still treated like animals no matter what the situation. What a utter dam disgrace that this family has given so much to the communuty and are treated like scum simply because of the colour of their skin. Lets cut the crap, had they been white, their exoerience would have been very different. There needs to be a public outcry to this, ENOUGH REALLY IS ENIUGH!…..My condolences and prayers are with the family at thus time.

  42. Disgusted !!!!!

    WHY,OH WHY, OH WHY, DID THE POLICE NOT ALLOW THE PARAMEDICS TO ENTER THE PUB UNTIL 30 MINUTES AFTER THEY HAD ARRIVED……..DARREN MAY HAVE STILL BEEN HERE WITH US TODAY IF THEY HAD ??

  43. Vanessa THOMAS

    My heart bleeds for you all, what a very tragic and sad story!!! My thoughts and prayers go out to you all and hope that justice and respect will be given to your family.RIP Daren and prayers for your brother’ssafe recoveryGod Bless you the family.x

  44. What a very sad and tragic story!!My heart bleeds for you all during this very sad time.My thoughts and prayers go out to you and I hope that justice and respect will be given to your family.RIP Daren and prayers for your brother’s safe and full recovery. God bless you the family!

  45. Robert Daley

    Once again the most horrendous stereotypes have been applied to a family that just happen to be non white by an organisation that treats non whites as latent criminals. The police behaved in just the way that I would expect them to and that also goes for that paragon of journalistic virtue The Sun ‘newspaper’. The Deslandes family have taken a courageous decision to release their own press statement as it clearly & succintly paints a picture of a modern black educated, moral & unhesitatingly decent family.
    Unfortunately, nothing can now be done for Darren but we can pray for Junior and pray for his mother, father, young brother, extended family and friends and wish them all Gods grace. I would also ask that the Deslandes family be defended against the slurs, filth, lies and deceit from those who never see black men as victims and so conciously welcome our demise. RIP.

  46. Somora Rattray

    I spent many happy evenings with the Deslandes family at the Newton and they were always loving and welcoming! I am in complete shock and am disgusted that the family have been portrayed in this manner! My heart and sympathy go to Winnie and the rest of the family! Jah bless you all! xxxxxxx RIP Darren. x

  47. S.K

    Has the Sun issued a retraction on this false reporting… If not shouldn’t we be asking them to do so if it hasn’t been done already… every time a report like this is printed.

  48. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    @S.K – No they havent – There will be a time when hopefully the family can take this up but this is not that time.

  49. We are appalled by this incident and our condolences at this time goes to the family and we hope that justice will prevail.

    Also there should be a thorough investigation from the point of when the police came and if there is any truth that they stopped the paramedics from attending the wounded and now deceased.

  50. Jim P

    This is an awful situation but I’m sick of the police always getting a hard time. First of all they are confronted with a situation where an unknown offender(s) has used a firearm to critically injure 2 persons, the scene has to be secure before medics are allowed to enter. Do the police simply rely on word of mouth before letting medics go in and become casualties or hostages should the gunman return. As this is a crime scene the injured and their clothing are to be treated as evidence,family members are not allowed to travel with the injured due to the potential risk of cross contamination which would allow the offender to walk in any future court case or appeal! My thoughts are with the family but don’t blame the police for something just because you don’t understand why they do what they do.

  51. Realtity

    @ Jim P

    Perhaps you missed it the first time.

    The Reality is the Police had the paramedics waiting outside the pub for up to 40 minutes before Junior was transported to the hospital. It does not take 40 minutes to ensure the pub is safe for paramedics. In this circumstance it took 5 minutes. The police stood there asking the family questions for 30+ mins while two gunshot victims laid in their own blood. The family have repeatedly stated that the police refused to let in the paramedics until they finished interrogating them. This had nothing to do with safety of the paramedics. There is no way this is acceptable and its offensive to suggest otherwise. There is absolutely no reason the police could not have let the paramedics in while questioning the family.

  52. Jerky

    My heart goes out to the Deslandes family, i was in shock when i heard about Darren and Junior. Darren and Junior were hardworking and had goals in life and were very family orintated. Darren always had time for his younger brother and always helped him with extra school work

    Winty and Lurline have provided love and shelter to foster children over the years even though they had a pub to run.

    I am very angry over the comments made in the media and it just shows black on black crime is treate as if the victims are criminals. I would lik to point out to the police and medi that the Deslandes family are a respectable and hardworking family and to treat them as one.

    I pray for Junior to pull through this, i also pray for the rest of the family

    R.I.P Darren Deslandes a true Gent and a SOLID ROLE MODEL

    Jerky

  53. Ngoma Bishop

    Full support to the family and the campaign

  54. Ngoma Bishop

    Full support to the family and the campaign if its family led

  55. Ja'qui

    My heart goes out to the whole Deslandes family. I am moved to tears by the unecessary tragic loss of life. WHEN are we as a community going to stand up and DO something. I am willing to help in anyway I can to STOP this dead end mindset.
    RIP Darren. So very sad.

  56. To the Deslandes Family, I am a resident of the United States, I came across your article on Facebook and was moved to express my sorrow for your loss. My Family is also Multiracial, and i can empathise with your situation. Far too often the Police or law enforcement personnel make faulty assumptions based on a individuals ethnicity. That is totally deplorable, it sickens me. I hope that by writing the article your family was able to receive a little reprieve from letting the public know the real truth. There are some who will try to condone what the Police did but then there are others who will see it for the deliberate disregard for a race of people that they believe aren’t worth saving.
    This is in no way police proceedure…. the paramedics should have been allowed to work on helping the victims while they the Police secured the area and questioned witnesses.
    Again i would like to express my deep sorrow for your senseless loss and i hope you all will be able to recover from this sensless crime.

  57. gail

    I am truly truly heart brokenly sorry for the tragic loss of Darren, and I do hope and pray that Junior stays with us all. May God Bless Him

  58. May heart and prayes go out to the entire deslandes family.
    So very upsetting to hear of yor lose and may god look down on your son and guide him through a speedy recovery.

    R.I.P Darren.

  59. Beijinhos

    I am lost for words concerning this tragedy, Mr & Mrs Deslandes have heroes for sons! I am so glad the truth has come to light as all these false claims and stories are disheartening and demoralising. May darren rest in peace and I pray Junior recover asap. Justice will prevail!

  60. HEARING THIS SADDENS ME EVEN MORE I HAVE SEEN IT IN THE MIRROR AND THE GUARDIAN WEEKLY PAPER I WAS GLAD TO HEAR THEY CAUGHT THE PERSON R.I.P DARREN AND JUNIOR COME ON MAN PULL THROUGH PRAYING 4 YOU AND THE FAMILY BLESS

  61. I have no words to describe how I feel, as a parent and a son I know your two sons acted out of love and instinct while Darren’s killer acted out of cowardice. All decent members of our society need to stand up and condemn these ignorant evil things that walk among us as we are all to blame as we see these animals and do nothing and allow our parents, sons, daughters and friends lives to be affected by them. I hope your son recovers his health may your son Darren rest in peace.

  62. susan

    @Jim P You are sick of the police getting a hard time..how dare you. Was it your son’s gunned down? So you are saying it’s right for police to isolate a 13 year boy who has just witnessed the murder of his brother in order to interview him without an adult present? Can you imagine how he was feeling at that time..no you can’t.

  63. Sheila Johnson

    I pray that you son recovers fully, and that your family keeps strong with gods blessing. May your lovely brave son rest in peace.

  64. Lee Kellman

    I would like so send my condolences to the family, I lost my partner in a very similar scenario 15 years ago on Boxing Day and the pain never goes away but you learn to live with it. Unfortunately when you hear stories like this it brings back the hurt and pain. I pray for the family that they will remain strong and will be supported by their family members and friends. Darren will feel no more pain just try to remember him the way he was and not the way he died. There are two brothers left who will also need your love and support. God Bless you all.

    Darren I did not know you but may your soul REST IN PEACE.

  65. clauddette brown

    I WIISH TO OFFER MY HEARTFELT SYMPATHIES AND CONDOLENCES TO THE DESLANDES FAMILY I HAVE BEEN IN YOUR PUB A COUPLE OF TIMES AND FOUND IT A QUIET HOMELY PLACE, WORDS CANNOT BEGIN TO EXPRESS HOW I FEEL FOR YOU, BUT I NEED TO SAY I AM DEEPLY SAD,ABOUT WHAT HAS NOW INVADED YOUR LIFE FOR I KNOW YOU WILL NEVER EVER GET OVER THIS,ME AND MY FAMILY WILL CONTINUE TO PRAY FOR AN EASY JOURNEY OF YOUR HEARTBREAK…REST WITH THE ANGELS..DARREN

  66. Kris

    My heart is filled with such sadness……..,am so sorry for your lost. I pray your son will make a full recovery, this is so hard, but we will keep you all in our prays, May God keep you and give you the strength to pull through this.

    Don’t give up they are out of order!

    Darren RIP in Jesus Name.

  67. Angie

    What a sad sad chain of events, my heart goes out to the Deslandes Family at what must be a hard to overcome loss. As much as I empathise totally with the way things were mishandled by the police, paramedics et al, the real stench emits from the gun and the society that has created this mindset.
    God Bless us All…

  68. Colin Edwards

    Ok first my heart goes out to the family! I can’t even begin to imagine your loss. I’m very sorry. Usually I do not go to “black” clubs or pubs because of the actions of cowards like this murderer, however my dad drinks there and my family Inc my kids went there to celebrate my dads birthday and it was so nice to see all black people getting on and I love it when it’s like that. We can’t do this anymore. Since hearing about darren from friends who knew him and his brother I have decided to quit work this year and move into politics as he has inspired me. We must make a stand now and show these mindless murdering cowards that they have no place in our future or it could be me writing this in 15yrs about my own son. Darren god bless you and jr I’m praying for you brother. To the family your son is a diamond and I can only speak for myself and say your son is my role model and I hope my son is half the man darren was. Xxxxx

  69. Colin Edwards

    Ps for those defending the police! Some might agree with you but I have nothing but bad experiences with them from an early age. The police are no good when it comes to black people. I am in retail management and not a criminal by any means but the police have tarnished me with that brush and it’s not right! Yes it’s the fault of this murderer who is black but most of us are law abiding people.

  70. Chris Kaine

    My heart and prayers go out to the entire deslandes family. I am truly sorry for your lost. I don’t know Darren but I am shocked as everyone should be. This put tears to my eyes as this has happened once to many times. It could be that this is your family that this happened to so please take time and say a prayer for the family and friends. Many people will have opinons as to what should have happened and why. Unfortunately it does not bring back a life. Lets just get the guns of the streets!!!! Darren RIP in Jesus Name.

  71. steph

    there are shootings everyday and i have to admit i have become almost used to reading about them and the propaganda that accompanies gun crime but that in itself is a reflection of how little value people assign to taking a life now-a-days. used to hearing about shootings or not, it is always much worse to find out the lack of reason (as if there can be any good reason) that leads to the loss of yet another life.
    i am saddened beyond belief to hear the tragedy that has befallen the deslandes family. i have only been drinking in the newton arms for about a year but was always looking forward to my next visit due to the friendly atmosphere and family environment as well as the distinct lack of trouble. i am shocked and saddened for the family. i cannot imagine the pain.
    it feels strange writing this as i although i knew the family by sight and name, i would not consider myself close, but i figure if everyone’s comments can at least bring some attention and awareness of the facts on the night and to highlight that not all lives lost to gun violence are involved in the criminal world, well then it was worth it.
    my sincerest condolences to the whole family and the community that is surely damaged beyond repair having lost yet another one of its hard working and heroic young men.

  72. Sina

    At this point in time I just want to offer my heartfelt condolence to this beautiful family who have been met with this tragedy.
    I pray for the FULL recovery of Junior in the name of Jesus.
    To the grieving family members of the Deslandes family, I pray that the comforter himself- the holy spirit will comfort you.
    Your family will never know another tragedy like this again.
    Thank God for the life of the Darren. May his soul rest in perfect peace. Amen

  73. Cherry

    I am so sadden for the loss of this young man. I pray that JESUS CHRIST Our REDEEMER will heal JUNIOR to full health. I pray that the family will find PEACE and STRENGHT throughtout this ordeal. What a start to the new year when we think of the snow, the rain and cold, where ever we abode – we believe life is tough and difficult, but if we really reflect on our lives and on others, we must be thankful and never forget to give thanks. Just imagine what this family is going through now, its not because they are a bad family, it’s the crosses we have to bear – just think of JOB, AND PRAY FOR STRENGTH. God bless you all – may his soul rest in peace.AMEN..

  74. Yvette Thomas

    I would like to pay my condolences to the family of Darren and junior. I have visted the Newton Arms for many years,and have always been made to feel very welcome by both landlord & Landlady. I was so incensed at reading how the media portrayed the incident and would like to say to the family to not let The Suns media portrayal of the incident add to their grief, irionically I am at present doing an asignment on Crime & The Media and have learnt that newspapers and the news sensationalise and dramatise stories to earn more readers and create moral panics, without giving any thought to the poor victims or their families.I only hope that they see the error of their ways and try to understand how hurtful this is for the families by adding to their grief. Most educated people do not beleive everything they read especially if its published in such tabloid trash as The Sun.
    May Darren rest in peace and Junior have a full recovery, and the family stay strong, myself and others are praying for Junior.

  75. Lyndsay

    Why is this so, that a human being can kill or watch another die, or prevent help? What times are we living in ? I just cant believe it! Not only is this impossible to comprehend it has taken me all my strength not to go down to the police station and bang my fists on their doors! I am ashamed to be part of this borough, i’m so sad, I am so sorry that Darren has passed on and junior is in hospital. Everytime I hear a piece of information about the night I just am more shocked and disgusted. What can be done about this. Our inspirations, hopes and freedom are continually taken away. Why did he have a gun, why? the paper today said he was homeless, what a fool this demented man is, the Deslandes family saved people, tried to spread their wealth of love and respect. I wish I knew what to do to help more, I wish my mum was here to give me words of wisdom. I am not academic enough to study law and help to change the often disgusting policies that are often put in place, but I can and do believe in people, helping people creating better communites, there is such a lack of community these days, it is a strange world full of illuminated living rooms filled with the negativity of Albert Square or the gritty falsities of grand theft auto. All I can say is that the Deslandes family are what makes the world go round, having the pleasure of being around such warm, friendly people made everything better, even from the other side of the bar, the Newton arms was the safest most humble place in the world a true family heart & soul x Darren your a king, a true protector and hero, I feel for your beautiful girlfriend, I hope Junior recovers quickly and gains strength from the families love & James be strong too it will take time, your brother is always with you x nobody deserves this, Winty & Lurleen you and your family are inspirations, you help so many others, if there is anything anyone can do please let us know somehow, your appeal will not go unheard xxx
    ‘May Darrens soul rest in perfect peace. Amen’
    peace & love

  76. Juliet

    My condolences go out to the Deslandes family. I am sickened to know that this has happened and hope that whoever is responsible for this hideuos crime will be caught. I also hope that those within out community know the perpetrator will step forward and let justice reign. I pray that in time your wounds will heal and ask that god give you strength to carry the burden that has been suddenly thrust upon you and that he bless you all and keep you safe. I am so saddened to hear what has happened i do not know you, but hope that through the strength of prayer and love you will come together and be strong. God Bless you all.

  77. Christine

    My heart and prayers goes out to the Deslandes family. This is truly heartbreaking. May god have no mercy on the coward that has destroyed this beautiful family. RIP Darren and I am praying for Junior.

  78. Doug de Souza

    From Brazil i am sending out my condolences. May Darren soul flight free back to the essence of the universe, and i prayfor Junior to recover. Peoples lives abruptally taken away, i prayfor all the inocents that have gone, interrupted lives, may they soul fly free back home, back to the essence where the ilusion of separateness doesnt exist. Theyare alive on us, on the sun on the moon, on the air, the birds, in the bird~s songs, on the stars, they are with ethernal father above on the skys, and in each leaf of each treess on earth on the same time. Good bless the Darrens, my heart and thoughts are with the Deslandes family. Be strong we awill pray for you. With love from Brasil.

  79. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Thank you to everyone who has sent their condolences to the Deslandes family. I have been keeping them informed of your prayers and thoughts expressed in all the comments.

  80. Sam

    My heart goes out to this amazing family, and my prayers go up for Junior. May true justice be done and peace prevail. Be strong and courageous – continue in the struggle and your victory will be sure. God Bless.

  81. Coutrney

    It is so sad to read such an article knowing the truth. I feel discussed & disappointed by the behaviours which has been demonstrated throughout the ethnic communities over the years, intern how society treats & deals with Blacks whenever a stabbing, gun or violent innocent occurs which involves a Black individual.
    I think to the majority of society ‘Blacks’ is looked at as the least favourable whenever it comes to ringing 999.

    The latest example I can give is my sister who was pregnant with my nephew during Aug 08 at the time when London was experiencing heat waves throughout the capital & the emergency services were trying to cope & prioritise calls. However, my sister was waiting for a bus on a very hot afternoon but decided to head to a convenient store for a bottle of water as she felt very hot trying to survive 25+oc heat, unfortunately she fainted luckily in the shop. The shop owner & a gentle both assisted and aided her until an ambulance arrived!!! at the scene of the incident. When the call was made to the emergency services (999) the shop owner was being asked questions, ie age, Colour, Colour & condition. Until he had to asks the operator ‘what does it matter what her colour is, if I said she was White would you prioritise the service quicker’??
    This all occurred approx 4-5pm I had finished work at 5pm made my way home after travelling 15 mls being told by my mother about the incident got into my car & drove to Marble arch, arriving at the scene by 6o’clock. In the end I had to take my sister home at which the ambulance never did arrive.
    The point I’m making here is that if it was a White individual in such distress as this it would had been priority to the police and abulance services.

    This clearly shows that we are in the lower end of the pecking order & still remains this way.
    With incidents such as this occurring and many more yet to come, we need to channel the time & efforts into getting our message and points across as I feel the police & press will not emphasise there imperfections on how the Police system is running & how they treat its tax’s payers ie Black people.
    We need to now use the press to our advantage given them the insight of how and where the system has failed us & still continues to do so. Exploitation is the way forward!!

    This message is not written to cause a cue but for us all to wake up & start challenging the system about how they support minorities in events like this.

    My condolence goes out to the family.

    My God provide you all with strength & love!

    C

  82. Del

    Rest In Peace. We can go on forever about injustice without change but what we need is to enforce change in order to oblitereate injustice. Many will fall the same way due to the wickedness of men as remember it was the intention of the murderer that set everything in motion. The reporting of these crimes is never to tell the absolute truth but to embelish what little information they have to sell papers. I trust the truth is now told and the family can find solace amd comfort in the arms of those who love and know them.

  83. Del

    The start of 2010 and the police continue to act as though we’re still back in 1981. Not surprising at all – political correctness forced much of thier ‘behaviour’ underground but it’s slowly starting to surface again. Always considered criminal…even when blatantly innocent. Similar police behaviour has caused riots in London in the past…but only the effects of such are ever remembered.

    My prayers go to the family and know that God WILL deliver righteous justice to those responsible.

  84. Charlene

    I feel truly devastated for this family, my condolences to all.
    I also had to suffer the heartbreak of one of my friends being stabbed and the Paramedics left him there on the grass for half an hour, before they attended to him as they feared the kiler was still on the loose, despite them being reassured that he had left the scene.
    How can you stand by and watch somebody die and you are supposed to be there to help them?
    Unfortunately in this case, the Police seem to have already made up their mind that this family was “Gangsters” and their treatment of this family beggars belief.
    I really hope Junior pulls through, the last thing his family needs is another tragedy.
    God bless you Darren, I am actually crying as I write this..

  85. Del

    @A concerned member of society

    Always lessons to learn AFTER the event. When will the ‘authorities’ actually start putting some of their ‘findings’ into real action? How long did it take for an inquiry to conclude that the Met was “institutionally racist”? Did there really need to be an expensive inquiry just to tell me what I already knew as a boy?? What will this ‘debriefing session’ conclude about this sad incident? What difference will that make to the way police behave in the future? If your answer is anything other than ‘NONE’ your lying to yourself and the rest of us.

  86. Caroline

    I am very sorry to hear about this family loss and hope and pray that the other son pulls through. God will deal with this situation in the best way he can. Please do not loose faith as he has already saved one life, namely snr Deslandes, by ensuring that there was no more bullets left for this devil to continue to do his devils work. No words can comfort this family for what they are going through but I hope and pray that they will get through this in their own way.

    God bless and thanks for putting the record straight.

  87. Sammy

    I feel so hurt and angry after reading this. It appears that we are still under valued in this country dispite the contribution decent people like the Desalandes family have made. We still dispite brushing ourselves off and working hard and putting up with all the other injustices can not expect to recieve the same treatment as any other person. The incident in itself is bad enough but when your dying child is denied basic human rights because of the color of his skin where do you go, who do you turn to. Maybe they were frightened thats probably why the real criminals are running up and down and the police are leaving them to it prefering to spend their time chasing fare dodgers and drink drivers – I am speechless because what words can comfort these people. I can only say that God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son so that we might have ever lasting life. My heart crys for the mother of these boys because what can ever cause a mothers care to cease towards the child she bare Darren will be in her thoughts till the day she dies and I just pray that until then she can find some kind of peace. We really need to pray for this woman, also if a fund could be set up for the family through a bank so that people can send donations because right now I feel so helpless.

  88. raphael

    I am here crying at this moment i have eight sons it could have being one of mines, what can i say? the murderer will get whats due to him ( if you live by the sword you will die by the sword ) may God have mercy on him. my heart goes out to the whole family ,about the police behaviour they done use commonsence they are more like politions cannot be trusted in any way.

  89. Stewart

    After reading this article I felt immense grief for this family. Thr treatment of the family by the police beggers belief.. its ‘Stephen Lawrence’ all over again.
    Condolances to the family and I pray that Jr recovers.
    RIP Darren

  90. i would like to send condolences to the Deslandes family. For the son son that was snatched from them by the coward. Stay strong, and continue to carry him everyday

  91. Nicole Sandford

    What can I say, although I find the whole thing quite disturbing to read, I can’t really say that I am surprised. The police have always been known for their blatant racist attitudes and treatment of ethnic minority groups. Despite what the government says, this problem remains a persistent factor in today’s society. After all the previous cases highlighted, in particular the Stephen Lawrence case, you would have thought that we would have moved on by now. As far as the media goes… well need I say anymore. If I were the Deslandes, I would seek not only a formal and official apology from that trash newspaper The Sun, but I would also demand compensation for the slanderous and fictitious story that they chose to print. I would also demand an independent and thorough review/enquiry into the actions of the police on the night and thereafter. I wouldn’t and couldn’t settle until something was done to punish all of those responsible (in whatever way) for the death of my child. My heart truly goes out for the Deslandes.

  92. Bev

    My sincere condolences to the Deslandes family. I cannot imagine what you are going through. Darren was a gentleman, I will miss his cheeky smile and jokes whenever there is a gathering. Everyone should be praying for Juniors full recovery, I am sure with Gods is going to work another miracle. Hang in their James, we are all routing for you, it hard, its going to take a long time but the pain will eventually subside and all the good memories will come flooding back to keep you going.
    I am praying for you and family, be strong.

  93. Bev

    RIP Darren, you will be sadly missed by all who knew you.

  94. Annette Cox

    It was with shock, horror and complete heartache that consumed me when I read this article. I worked with Lurline many years ago at British Gas and even attended the christening of Wintworth Jnr. We were good colleagues and friends, but over the years we lost contact.

    Words cannot express how i am feeling right now. Sadness, tears and anger consume me.

    Lurline and Winty if you read this email please know that I am so very sorry to hear of the terrible tradgedy that has happended to your family and for the loss of your beloved handsome son. I am praying for the whole family.

    May your faith in god comfort you at this very sad time.

  95. Jennifer

    My sincere condolences to the Deslandes family. I pray that you remain strong
    throughout this terrible tragedy.
    I myself have visited the Newton Arms on a few occassions, and have found it very warm and welcoming.
    I do hope you bring the police to task, for the disgusting way they have behaved to another human being
    Bless

  96. Albert Frimpong

    I send my sincere condolences to the family for a great loss of a dedicated son who in true sense of the black community values of family put his life on the line for his family. I also pay great tribute to the other brother who is fighting for his life and pray that he pulls though this terrible ordeal.

    To the actions of the Police all I can say is that some of us are not suprised at this shameful, dastardly and cowardly act displayed. Here is a situation of TRUE BULLIES fearing to even enter a premises even when they have been informed that the gun man (murderer) had fled.

    Their racist and cowardly act has been further depicted in the dispecable act of tricking a 13 year old who is suffering from severe trauma after having seen his 2 brothers being shot into an interview. What were they after – “the usual all blacks are criminals” syndrome. They had wanted to trick the young traumatised into giving them a statement to confim their racist bias. Who knows what “suggestions” that they had made to the boy under the guise of “talking” with him.

    I am of the opinion that the family should sue the Police for negligence, manslaughter and unnecessarily and cowardly causing the death of their son.

    To think of a government Minister who is living in cloud cukoo land stating today 14/01/10 that their is less racism in the UK than there was 10 years ago.

    WE SHALL OVERCOME ON DAY. GOD BLESS YOU AND I WISH YOU PEACE.

    TO THE POLICE, I SAY ROT IN HELL.

  97. Ceri Ball

    RIP Darren. I worked with this this honourable man for around 3 years at SLFHA. He was a hardworking, warm, caring young man always laughing 😉 My thoughts are with the Deslandes family…and pray for the swift recovery of his younger brother. God Bless. XXXXXXX

  98. Kim Troutt

    Sincere condolences to your family at this time

  99. Michael Kilkelly

    I Have read with shock the events that followed the shooting of 2 innocent men and the attack on the family.The POLICE should be disgusted and ashamed at the way in which the deslandes family have been treated.It Appears that the McPherson report and young Stevens Lawerance Death has had not effect on how Crime is dealt with and investigated.I Knew Darren at SLFHA and he was a pleasure to work with and was a fine upstanding youngman with a Strong sense of Morality this is a true reflection of Darren’s Family and upbringing not the lies printed in the Press.My Family will pray for the response of his Soul and the recovery of his families health both physically and mentally.God Bless you all.

  100. Susan

    This is a terrible thing to have happened. Deepest sympathy to your family and friends. For those that I know who know them, they only have the highest praise for these young men and their family.

  101. Dean Nichols

    Sending my sincere condolences to the Deslandes family. Try and be strong during this difficult time. God willing the harshest form of justice will be met to that cowardly individual who committed this devastating crime and anyone who is knowingly protecting him.

    This saddens me deeply!! what a way to bring in the new year…

    This statement should be published in the various tabloids to set the record straight…

    Can’t believe the sun are still as racist as ever…. things never change!

  102. Patrick Hutchinson

    The Police never cease to fcuking amaze me. They need to be held fully accountable for their part in this! As for the Sun I stopped reading that garbage about 15years ago. RIP

  103. Asher

    Greetings
    This has made me feel so sick, I can not put into words how I am feeling.
    Please Please Please find this heartless person.
    Jah Bless this family because they have done no wronge
    All Jah LOVE Asher

  104. Kimroy D Mussington

    I hope someone who know this Killer would comeforward and give him up. Stop thinking you’re helping the police, you’re helping the Family.There’s too much of this Senseless Macho behavaior going on with today’s youngsters to make logical sense, it appear as thought we’re at war with each other.
    Reading the article it appears to me that the Police were Negligent in the Duty, Someone in charge forgot the first principal of an efficient police officer ” The preservation of life” i am sure when the dust is settled the whoever was in charge will be held accountable, or should be held accountable for their non-action ith respect to the preservation of life. A good legal eagle will have a field day with this.
    Right not lets focus on what’s Inportant, bringing this Suspect to answer for his deeds, and you people out there put your emotions aside for now and do the RIGHT THING
    My Condoliences and sympathy goes to the Family
    forgive my spelling mistakes

    Kimroy D Mussington
    Orlando Florida

  105. Jd

    RIP to 2 gentlemen. I never knew personally you but am acquainted with your family.
    You 2 were examples to our youth of how decency and hard work gains true respect.
    By a mans works shall he be known.
    You died because some cowardly trash thinks carrying a gun and using on his own people somehow gains him the respect of the scum he hangs with.
    You died because members of our community find it easier to live the stereotype society has painted for them, then to do as you did.
    You died because the police judge us on the actions of the vultures that prey on decent members of our community, not on the people we are.
    Even now some sick twisted fool is seeking to protect your murderer, for what? So he can destroy more lives and families of decent folk like you.

    I see people here trying to foist some blame on the [institutionally racist] police…Why ? we know what to expect from them, didn’t we witness a brother in Tottenham die in David Lammys arms; a victim of the same excuse for inaction, the pub was safe enough for an MP to go in but not safe enough for the medics.
    My Brethren racism comes in many forms; we fight it and defeat it.
    But the reality is these brave mens death is caused by all of us, their blood is on our hands…..because we fail to police our own community, we let our youth run wild and blame everyone but ourselves……
    Please all of you stand back and look at what we are doing to ourselves, do we want more children to grow up like Darren & Junior, or do we want more reprobate cowards with guns shooting us down.
    The choice is here and now. Fight the gangsta mentality or it will kill us all.
    Bless

  106. Lorna

    My heart goes out to the Deslandes family. I can’t stop thinking of how the police have treated the family especially James who is in the same class as my daughter. You will always be in my thoughts.

  107. Yvonne

    There should be a minimum sentence of no less than 20 years awaiting each of these cowardly young men who run around with guns and knives and who so easily and wantonly take a life. They would be the first to squirm like the legless worms that they’re if some other coward held a gun to their face. My heart goes out to this family who one minute is working hard and enjoying the love within their family and the next their lives and dreams for their future shattered in this most senseless way. Two young men are dead and a family torn apart. These brutes who committed such a heinous need to be apprehended as matter of urgency and be put away until they’re very old men. As for the behaviour of the police as described in the family’s press release, isn’t rather ironic that we had a government minister telling us today that Black and other minority communities can no longer be considered to be disadvantaged by virture of ‘race’ in this country? As for the ‘Sun’ can I suggest that Black people spend their money on something that promotes their community rather than on ‘racist’ trash.

  108. love-na

    rip darren and i pray junior makes a full recovery god be with u all x

  109. Zena Edwards

    I am so sorry for your loss. You are all in my thoughts. I cannot believe the insensitivity of that comic The Sun. It is such a flagrant display of racist agenda to taint the black community (again… it’s getting boring) and the police… behaving true to insitutionalized form, so no comment.

    Again I pass on my condolences.
    RIP.

  110. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Kimroy@ A man has been charged for the murder of Darren and attempted murder of Junior and their father. He is now in custody awaiting trial.

  111. Alison

    My condolences go without saying, this situation is heartbreaking. However can we please remember that we still have a murderer out there somewhere.

    This man must be caught.

  112. Cathleen

    Firstly I offer my deepest condolences to the Deslandes Family.

    I am a mother of two men aged 30 and 21. Like your sons, they are law abiding educated young men, but the Police appear to always be on the look out to tarnish all black men with the same brush and do not have the intelligence to discrimate between those who commit crimes and those who are going about their daily lives, as long as they are Black. I am collecting the stop and search forms that my youngest receives too often when he comes home, particularly as he is at University in Southampton. I think that he fits the steorotype Tall, Black and Handsome. I intend to send these to the Home Secretary to ask if he would be happy for a member of his family to be stopped in this way. I do not read the Sun, but I am not surprise to hear about the racist comments made without researching the facts, after all they have to continue to fuel the fire of their above average intelligent reader sic.

    And as for the concern member of society, you really need a reality check. I have several good friends who are Black Police officers, two at senior level. Having had several “discussions” with them over the years, it is clear to me that even when you are “in/part the system” you are treated differently by the system if you are Black. God forbid that the person lying in a pool of blood needing attention is a member of your family, I think you would have a very different perspective. I found some of your remarks incredibly insensitive and bordering on offensive. But least we forget, there has always been the House N.gg..s

    Unfortunately, a loving law abiding family who have just lost their eldest son, and has another critical injury has to deal with their grief and defend their sons characters at the same time, this is so wrong.

    I trust that in time they find comfort in the happy memories they have of Darren. I pray for you and the other members of your family. God Bless.

  113. My heart goes out to the Deslandes family. I know your pain – I too lost a son to gun crime. My disgust to the police on the night. Surely medical intervention ASAP is a basic human right! There should be an inquiry as to why Junior had to wait over 30 mins to get medical assistance. I pray everyone join forces to catch the coward that shattered the heart of this family. May the mercy of God help to heal Junior. RIP Darren.

  114. Tinkerbell

    Having just come from Wintworth and Lurline’s house this evening, I can only express the heart wrenching sadness I felt walking through the door.There are no words to describe the pain and suffering which this family are going through, this should never of happened, it was a callous heinous crime which served no purpose, Darren lost his life for nothing, after playing with Scarlet Juniors gorgeous daughter, I prey that he pulls through to see this little madam grow, she is such a joy and I know she misses her daddy as she was calling his name on my phone.
    I would like to thank the Deslandes family for welcoming me and my son into their home, you truly are one of a kind. God Bless you and the rest of your family.
    RIP Darren Deslandes, gone but not forgotten.

  115. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    @Tinkerbell – The 114 comments here & the 1, 115 people on Facebook ( all but 2 )condolences to the family attest to their standing in the community and the pain felt by all of us at the senseless death of Darren and injuries to Junior who remains in hospital. It is now two weeks since this horrendous act took place and still people are posting their comments. Thanks again and again to everyone here for their prayers and thoughts.

  116. Janice

    The Deslandes Family are in my Prayers every night, and i sincerly hope that with all the love every1 is showing, and all the prayers that are being said for both Darren & Junior and the rest of the family, that this will go a little way with helping them get through this awful chapter in thier lives…..God Bless x

  117. Dee

    Again, I feel that sadness when lives are lost. I hope that their son makes a full recovery and there is brightness again. As mother to a young man, I also relate to the tireless effort that parents make so that your child will be a good model to others but there is also the niggling fear that there are others who are not.

    As I read through these comments and the publicity, I hope that they can’t be used in a way that could jeopardise the inevitable trial or independent police inquiry (if that’s a decision that’s made). At times, jury members from varied backgrounds are lacking and as it’s still an area to be improved, it would be awful if people are prevented from doing so. I am simply raising the need for caution. Might I also suggest that the names of children (and perhaps even their behaviour etc) are not included as being on the internet is not something they are able to give their consent? I for one didn’t know there were any dependants and shouldn’t some stuff just be private?

    I do hope I’m not speaking out of turn-merely expressing my thoughts.

    Blessings

  118. Mrs Sallie Samuda

    When my friend told me about this awful incident it made me feel so sad inside in my heart.No-one has the right to take the last breathe out of one of gods earth angels.This man who has lost his life is an absolute hero in my eyes.God will take care of him for the family until the day comes where they rejoyce and meet again.The family must be strong and stay together through their tough journey ahead.I have prayed for these young men and the family.I have felt your lost inside my heart.As I always say u do not have to know someone to grieve for them.I suspose I always been full of emotions but its the way god made me.I love everyone and hate no-one in life.Life is so short for some of us so we must live everyday with love and respect for others.The man who did this will be caught and he wil be punished for his wrong doing.How dare he cause this much pain.Please stay together with your support as a family.God bless these people plse as they need you right now in their lives.I shall pray for you all.

  119. Trev London

    This is tragic that they family not only have the shock of a devasting murder on there hands but also teh simple fact that the press sensationalise the facts. I hope this is addressed with teh same amount of dignity as the articule I have just read. It any loss of life is tragic. You don’t become a man by picking up a gun – you become a man by learning the difference between wrong and right; violence is neer a solution – I know this extrodinary family will not be broken and will go on and rebuild. They already have one angel looking down on them all from above. I pray there is not two and the other brother makes a full recovery. In time to accept a courage of britain award. Prayers and condolences to Deslandes family and all that have lost loved ones.

  120. Nick Weatherley

    Dan Moshenberg :A terrible and all too familiar story. My condolences to the family. Rest in peace Darren. Let us hope something, some kind of justice and peace emerges from all this violence, from men with guns and, even more, from States without hearts

    Says it all – my prayers go out to the family and friends and to Junior who hopefully makes a full recovery.

  121. Dionne Ashley

    Deepest condolences to the Deslandes family, I hope your other son makes a full recovery.

  122. Anextracoldguinnessplease

    Dear sokari, out of respect for the Deslandes family and in the spirit of my earlier post – January 8th, 2010 at 12:54 | #18 – I wonder if you would give consideration to raising a separate article, perhaps entitled: “FEEDBACK: Darren Deslandes & Wintworth Deslandes Jr. Family Press Release”, on which we can discuss and respectfully debate some of the wider issues raised by this tragic incident.
    A form of continuity cab be achieved by referening the topics to each other via a link on the first post on each page. Thanks.

    It goes without saying that if the Deslandes family feel that this request is inappropriate you can disregard it. Thank you.

    Whatever happens I take this opportunity to renew my condolences to the entire Deslandes family at the loss of their son Darren and to join together with everyone praying that Junior and may survive this incident.

    In case there are any issues with ‘moderating’ the new topic I am more than happy to volunteer to provide assistance.

    Thank you and Jah bless

    Anextracoldpintofguinness

  123. Ruth

    My thoughts are with the whole family. May God bless you all. Stay strong. For the person who has taken a life and put his brother in hospital, he will be found. He will pay. Right now he is running scared. Justice will be done. My love and thoughts to the whole family. xxx

  124. AMC

    My condolences to the entire family.
    I believe that the good generally suffer – perhaps through jealousy.
    If there is any practical thing I could do, please do not hesitate to let me know.
    Everything we experience is for the Glory of God.
    This is a big toll for one family.
    I pray that God will help us to come together as a community of love to bring the perpetrators to justice.
    Lord, please hear all of our prayers in Jesus’name.

  125. Natalie

    This is absolutley tragic. The Newton arms was a friendly pub which I enjoyed drinking in for numerous years. I am devestated for Winty, Lerline and James. Darren was a lovely guy who did not deserve this. My prayers and thoughts are with the family. I hope that Junior makes a full recovery and that the family can somehow go on and rebuild their life xxx.

  126. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    I do not think this is appropriate at this time.

  127. Andreene

    My condolences to the Deslandes family. I was shocked and digusted to have read about this tragedy. I was most disgusted that both the police and the who suppose to save lives actually contributed to the lost of Mr. Deslandes . It appears that neither the police or the paramedics value the life of this family. May god bless you all my deepest sympathy.

  128. Phil

    A concerned member of society :I personally know some of the people involved in this and I work for the authorities so I can see dual sides of the spectrum. What is outlined reads detrimental to say the least, however at the very end of the investigation as per policy a huge debrief will take place and all actions before, during and after will be assessed evaluated and accounted for. Since the Stephen Lawrence murder racism is a high priority and any officer found to be acting in that manner especially in such a serious case as this will be dealt with accordingly. What doesnt help is when people throw out heated and stereotypical negative comments on forums such as this. We need more ethnic people actually working for and with the organisations not just bad mouthing from the outside, that is what tars us with the same brush, they need to see us as educated and respectable people not thugs and street gangsters. The paramedics actually have a policy A- not to enter pubs alone and B- to ensure they are free of risk prior to entering the pub. I have experienced numerous cases where people have died or were delayed help and although in this case everyone is blaming the police I can almost 100 percent guarantee that the paramedics policy to ensure they were not at risk is what caused this, Police are always asked to check out a violent scene before allowing them access this is a paramedic and not a police policy! although the witnesses said they had left, the police would not have known that and if they allowed the medics to go in (who are unarmed) and then they got killed that would have instigated a whole new argument!, And again the article says the police were emotionless, sadly that is how they are trained to be, they cant afford to allow their emotions to obscure the need to investigate a serious crime, I cant say I agree with what they do and have examples of their bad behaviour even in my own family, but what needs to happen is us as a race need to start training as lawyers, solicitors and police and actually leading by example, as for the media, they will never care, their aim is to sell papers and scandal sells, they are not or never will be concerned about the true feelings of people. I think we need to pray for my friend Juniors recovery and justice to prevail, I personally like to see all the evidence before flaring up at articles,there are two sides and from what I have read above even I have questions, such as was Darren not placed in the recovery position? also in terms of isolating the child, again what are the reasons for this?, soemtimes children have been able to solve murders! was it a policy or what? I cant condone their methods but it was a murder scene and police cant simply assume family were not involved just because they were family, (I mean in general not this case) sadly their methods in these situations are robust, and on the outside it appears unnecessary but I sometimes think personal and emotional decisions will always cloud that of someone that is not emotionally connected, i’m not agreeing or blaming as this is sad for all, the inquest is the final stance! God sees all and he will repay!

    @Andreene

    @Andreene

  129. Janice

    Phil…why 30 minutes before allowing the paramedics in, when the family were telling the police the scum had already fled out of the back of the pub, and why did they not allow the parents to accompany their son in the ambulance ??

  130. Janice

    Phil…….how can it be justified, allowing 30 minutes before the paramedics went in and then not allowing the distraught parents travel in the ambulance ??

  131. Michael Kilkelly

    Phil…….They did not act with any empathy towards the family and a Risk assessment at the scene should not have taken 30minutes.Whatever the policy and proceedure says it should be adjusted at scene.Also I would question the legality of interviewing a child without the parents/legal representative present.To try and rationalise this event is itself irrational.God Bless and RIP Darren

  132. Marsha Semie

    I am sorry to hear about this, and hope that the man did this terrible crime is caugth and punished. I pray for the Deslandes family and hope that your family are able to find peace and resolution to your pain. All I can say is that I am sorry from myself and my family.

    God Bless

  133. Wayne Haynes

    I recieved this article via email at work today. As a result I am stunned by what I have read. My emotions have gone from choking back tears to anger to deepest sympathy. I am just writing from the heart even though if asked I would say I am at a loss for words.
    I can only imagine the pain you are all going through as a family. I have 2 sons in their teens and am constantly worrying for their welfare in todays society.
    Situations like this happening to a family respected amongst the community does not help to calm that worry.
    I am very local to the Newton Arms, sadly I never had the fortune of attending and recieving your highly respected services prior to this terrible tragedy.
    From the bottom of mine and my families heart we offer our deepest sympathies at the loss of Darren and pray for Junior to make a full recovery.

    Regards

    Wayne Haynes and Family.

  134. Colin (Thornton Heath)

    Deepest sympathy to the whole of Deslandes Family at this time and onwards, it was a total shock to be hearing this story upon getting up on the New Years day. Let alone this unjust act happening and in Croydon area yet again. After hearing of other tragic avoidable deaths in the recent news. I always think to myself (I hope its not black people involved).All I thought is enough is enough a man mugged in Warwick Road (Thornton Heath died)just before this,and another paid for his life in east London after chasing down a mugger,in the weeks before this unjust act. I thought that the majority of people in Croydon are great people, and that we must come together and support the family of the man who died in Warwick Road. This news (Deslandes) spurred me to support this family, we read about somebody else in the paper or hear it through the media. “Who’s tragedy will it be next”,(goes through my mind).I circulated the Deslandes Family Press release to about 4 people, and was about to greatly increase that figure when I thought, not yet read this link first so that I can explain and answer any questions. I spotted the name Haynes and realised that was one in my circulation list. Just goes to show each one -tell one, and before you know it you can have a powerful voice.( Just like the media photographers who held a demonstration recently relating to being stopped under section 44 of the Terrorism Act 2000, which allows officers to stop and search without the need for “suspicion” within designated areas in the UK) They managed to get over 2000 people there. We can do this to get a mass protest, instead of partying, wake up and be a relevent part of society you owe it to those who came before us!
    I have made comment of the Press release at a meeting of union members of Lurline former employers. I will do all I can!
    God bless, guide and keep you all.
    Colin

  135. Colin (Thornton Heath)

    Wayne thanks for acting on it!
    Colin

  136. Anextracoldpintofguinnessplease

    Sokari :
    I do not think this is appropriate at this time.

    Thank you for your response.

  137. Han

    @Sokari

    Sokari, I was thinking about Darren today and was wondering if there was an update on Junior? I hope he is recovering.

    I cant stand the thought of the family losing another son.
    x

  138. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Junior is recovering from his injuries.

  139. Han

    @Sokari

    I am really happy to hear that- thank u & god bless.

  140. Chris Scott

    I remember Darren when he joined Dulwich College, I was in the 5th year, so unbeknown to him I appointed myself his guardian. He was quiet, shy but always polite, he walked in a certain way a very charismatic walk.

    Years later I recognised him by his walk, by he was big enough to be my guardian. I used to bump into him walking to work in Croydon.

    I heard about the shooting but only found out today it was him.

    He sacrificed himself being a Guardian to his loved ones…

    To his family and friends take solace in the truth that God is the ultimate Guardian and justice will be served.

    My condolences.

    C.Scott

  141. Comment by post author

    Sokari

    Chris – Thank you so much for taking the time to write your memories of Darren and your condolences. Darren will be laid to rest on Friday and it is testament to him and his family that over 1000 people are expected to be there unified in our love for this beautiful young man.