Case: Murder in Matalan: Jamie Simpson
Victim
Name:
Jamie Simpson
Gender:
Male
Date:
2008-03-22
Nationality:
British
Weapon:
Knife
Killer
Name:
Kobina Essel
Gender:
Male
Nationality:
British
Killer
Name:
Anthony Maina
Gender:
Male
Nationality:
British
Killer
Name:
Simeon Jumah
Gender:
Male
Nationality:
British
Killer
Name:
Randy Osei-Owusu
Gender:
Male
Nationality:
British
Status: Solved
Categories: Robbery
Case synopsis:

Matalan shop manager Jamie Simpson was murdered during a robbery organised by one of his colleagues.

Roy Williams, who claimed to be a friend of the victim, plotted the raid after working at the store in the Kingsland Centre in Hackney, east London, for six months.

He told his friend Simeon Jumah, a former Argos delivery driver, that up to £30,000 in cash takings could be snatched at closing time.

Jumah tasked his girlfriend's cousin Jamal Chambers to recruit three 'youngers' to carry out the robbery: Kobina Essel, 17, Randy Osei-Owusu, 15, and Anthony Maina, 18.

In a series of meetings at Jumah's house Williams took them through detailed plans of the shop floor, CCTV coverage and staff movements.

The gang picked the Easter weekend, hoping there would be bumper takings in the cash office by closing time, and went on a recce of the shop.

On Saturday, March 22, 2008, shortly before the store shut at 7pm, CCTV cameras captured the three robbers slipping in to the shop, hooded and wearing dark clothing.

Williams who was patrolling the first floor allowed the robbers to get to the stairwell before telling colleagues the shop was clear of customers.

He left with a second guard as Mr Simpson cashed up.

The robbers hid in the staircase (pictured below) for almost an hour, their shadowy movements caught on camera, while Mr Simpson emptied all the tills on both floors.

The robbers wait in the stairwell at Matalan

As he exited the cash office shortly before 8pm, carrying only a set of keys, Essel left his hiding place and approached him on the shop floor.

The store's cameras captured the six-second confrontation during which 19-stone Mr Simpson was stabbed three times in the back and neck and left for dead as the robbers fled empty-handed through a fire escape.

Mr Simpson, clutching his neck, tried to raise the alarm with shop assistants who were working nearby and staff desperately grabbed clothes and towels from shop rails to staunch the bleeding.

Police and ambulances arrived just after 8pm, shortly before a doctor in an air ambulance helicopter, but Mr Simpson's life could not be saved. The wound to his neck had cut through the jugular and the carotid artery.

Tragically Mr Simpson, whose family lived in Derby, was only on duty because he swapped his shift with colleague Rachel Ryan the previous day.

After extensive investigations in to mobile phone records and movements, CCTV and the use of cars, police were able to round up the Matalan gang members.

Hidden in a shed in Essel's garden officers found his white hooded top and a JD sports bag that was spattered with Mr Simpson's blood.

Anthony MainaMaina (pictured right) was arrested almost a year later after his prints were found in a vehicle used to car-jack the Ford Fiesta used for the gang's getaway.

At the time of the robbery he had been on bail for the murder of 17 year-old A-level student Rizwan Darbar during a mobile phone mugging in October 2007.

He had been arrested in connection with the stabbing but police had to bail him because there was not enough evidence to press charges.

Maina was finally charged with Rizwan's murder in January 2009 and was convicted after a trial. He was jailed for life and ordered to serve a minimum 14-year sentence.

In February 2010, Kobina Essel (bottom left) was convicted of the murder of Jamie Simpson. Jumah (bottom centre), 25, Maina and Osei-Owusu (bottom right) were convicted of manslaughter.

Kobina EsselSimeon JumahRandy Osei-Owusu

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