Two boys, 17, found guilty of murder after 16-year-old was stabbed

Two 17-year-old boys are found guilty of murder after an innocent 16-year-old was stabbed to death with a sword in a case of mistaken identity

  • Ronan Kanda was struck twice on Mount Road in Lanesfield, Wolverhampton
  • One of the boys, 16, collected large machete from post office after buying online

Two teenagers have been found guilty of murdering a 16-year-old boy after he was stabbed with a sword just yards from his home. 

Ronan Kanda was struck twice from behind on Mount Road in Lanesfield, Wolverhampton, in a shocking case of mistaken identity, a court heard.

The teenager was returning from a friend’s house, having bought a PlayStation controller for £5, when he was fatally attacked on the evening of June 29 last year.

Two 17-year-old boys – aged 16 at the time – have been found guilty of murder by a jury after a five-week trial at Wolverhampton Crown Court.

Only one of them stabbed Ronan, but the other 16-year-old was found to have acted in the joint enterprise of his murder. 

Pictured: Ronan Kanda, the 16-year-old boy who was stabbed to death on Mount Road, in Lanesfield, Wolverhampton

Mr Kanda was pronounced dead at the scene after the teenagers chased and struck him

Two men, Josiah Francis, 20, and Joseph Whittaker, 18, also stood trial but were acquitted of all charges.

Earlier in the day on June 29 last year one of the 16-year-olds had collected a Ninja sword set and a large machete from a local post-office which he had purchased online. 

He had taken a dislike to one of Ronan’s friends and the two had fought on a previous occasion.

Later that day, the 16-year-old conspired with three associates to visit Ronan’s friend as he was owed money, but it was clear from the weapons they carried that their intention was violence. 

All four travelled to Lanesfield in a red Corsa driven by Francis with Whittaker as the front-seat passenger.

Roman spent the day with a friend playing snooker before he left his home – where he lived with his parents and sister – at around 8pm to collect the gaming controller.

Just before 8.30pm, the Corsa entered Mount Road as Ronan was almost home and the 17-year-olds got out of the car and chased after Ronan.

The first reached him and struck twice. Ronan then stumbled and called for help before collapsing in the road and later dying at the scene.

Detective Inspector Ade George said: ‘There are no winners when knives remain on our streets and we will continue to crack down on those who think it’s acceptable to carry them’

Officers immediately launched an investigation and painstaking CCTV analysis led to arrests within days.

A jury took just over two hours to find the 17-year-olds, who cannot be named for legal reasons, guilty of murder. They will be sentenced on July 13.

Detective Inspector Ade George, from West Midlands Police’s homicide unit, said: ‘The pain of losing a child is immeasurable, but to also know that he was not the intended target adds a whole new layer of grief and I cannot begin to imagine the sorrow Ronan’s family feel. 

‘The defendants on trial are also too young to have thrown their lives away on such reckless actions that led to this tragedy.

‘Their families too will suffer as they face lengthy prison sentences. There are no winners when knives remain on our streets and we will continue to crack down on those who think it’s acceptable to carry them.’

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