Man who knew Damilola Taylor recalls how the murder changed 'the way he lives his life'

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'I never leave places without saying bye:' Music producer who was with Damilola Taylor, 10, shortly before he was stabbed to death with a broken bottle recalls how the murder changed 'the way he lives his life'

Damilola Taylor was stabbed to death with a broken bottle 20 years ago, aged 10Music producer Tinyman returned to Peckham library where last saw DamilolaAdded since savage murder, never leaves places without saying 'bye' to people

By Chloe Morgan For Mailonline

Published: 14:45 GMT, 28 October 2020 | Updated: 14:45 GMT, 28 October 2020

A music producer who was with Damilola Taylor shortly before the 10-year-old was stabbed to death with a broken bottle in an unprovoked attack 20 years ago has told how the savage murder has changed the 'trajectory of the way he lives his life.'  

In the poignant Channel 4 documentary Damilola: The Boy Next Door, radio presenter Yinka Bokinni, speaks to music producer, Tinyman - both knew Dimilola. 

They both share their memories in the Peckham library where Tinyman last saw Damilola on the day he was killed, 27 November 2000. It’s the first time either have been back since the murder.  

'Now I look back, it rewires and changed the trajectory of the way I live my life,' he explains. 'The way I see people, the way I interact with people. I never leave places without saying "bye" to people because I know the friend you could be playing Pokémon with today, could be gone tomorrow.' 

In tonight's episode of Channel 4's documentary Damilola: The Boy Next Door, music producer, Tinyman (pictured) recalls his last moment's with Damilola Taylor shortly before he was murdered in an unprovoked attack 20 years ago

CCTV footage released at the time of the murder showed Damilola entering a lift with two unidentified friends, who were later revealed to be his childhood friend John Boyega then aged eight, and his sister, aged 10 (pictured)

The savage murder of Damilola Taylor, pictured, in Peckham in an unprovoked attack 20 years ago sparked nationwide outrage after the ten-year-old was stabbed to death with a broken bottle

Damilola had moved to Britain from Nigeria a few months before he was jabbed in the thigh with a broken beer bottle by a gang of youths.

The youngster was walking from after leaving a computer class at his local library when he was stabbed and was discovered bleeding to death in a stairway, having left a 30-metre trail of blood behind him. 

Brothers Danny and Ricky Preddie, then aged 12 and 13, were convicted of Damilola's manslaughter in 2006.

CCTV footage released at the time of the murder showed Damilola entering a lift with two unidentified friends, who were later revealed to be his childhood friend John Boyega then aged eight, and his sister, aged 10.

Tinyman spoke to radio presenter and former resident of the estate Yinka Bokinni who returned to return to the library for the first time since Damilola's murder. Pictured, together

Damilola (pictured) had moved to Britain from Nigeria a few months before he was jabbed in the thigh with a broken beer bottle by a gang of youths

'We played Pokémon here on the computers,' recalls Tinyman. 'We just always used to play Pokémon.

'On the day Dami was killed, it was a normal day at computer club, everyone was here. He'd gone home and that was the last time I saw him.

'In my mind he was just going to go home and I'd see him tomorrow, but the next day I've come, and I've just felt the energy. 

'One of the older youths that used to come here, he must've been year 7, he was like: "Didn't you hear, the kid that comes here called Damilola Taylor got killed yesterday."'

He continues: 'As a young kid trying to process, I was just with this guy, and now I'm never going to be with this guy. If only I said, "let's play one more Pokémon game."

Tinyman (pictured) recalls how the murder of his friend Damilola Taylor has changed 'the way he lives his life'

'They're the thoughts I've had and me not understanding or processing the fact that when you die, it means you're never coming back.'

Yinka, who was Damilola's friend and neighbour, went on to ask what it was like for Tinyman to return to the library for the first time since Damilola's murder.  

'One of the things I've compartmentalised has been taken out the box a bit because we're here,' he explains. 

'I feel like a weight to an extent has been lifted off my shoulders because I knew people could relate and there was other people that knew, but for it to be someone like you who I've met from a completely different world, this is shared.'

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