Ipswich stabbing: family calls for end to violence

6 June 2018, 13:11 | Updated: 6 June 2018, 13:31

The family of a teenager stabbed in Ipswich speak

The "heartbroken" mother and stepmother of a teenager stabbed to death in Ipswich on Saturday have said "the violence has got to stop".

17 year old Tavis Spencer-Aitkens was approached by two men on bicycles who attacked him in Packard Avenue, before four to five other men also assaulted him.

Suffolk Police believe it was a "targeted attack".

His mother Sharon Box and stepmother Helen Forbes have faced the media at a press conference today and appealed for anyone with information about his death to come forward.

His mother, who was too upset to speak, had her words read by a family liaison officer.

She said the loss of Tavis had "devastated" the family and appealed for anyone with information to come forward, adding: "I appreciate you may be concerned yourself, but please understand the pain our family is going through."

"Tavis was our world," she said. "He meant everything to us.

"We will remember him as having a lovely soul.

"He was a well-mannered, polite young man.

"He was cheeky, outgoing, he loved his drill music and was a talented footballer.

"He was truly loved and is truly missed."

She said he was taken "unnecessarily, needlessly and cruelly" and his family is "heartbroken".

"If anybody witnessed this horrific attack or heard or saw anything could they please, please, please come forward," she said.

His step-mother Helen Forbes, who sat beside his mother, began to read her own statement before having to let a family liaison officer take over, wiping tears from her eyes.

"Tavis was only 17," she said. "He should have had his whole life in front of him.

"He should have had the chance to have a family of his own."

She added: "The violence has got to stop before it breaks even more hearts, just like it has broken mine.

"I don't want other parents to feel the heartache and pain that we are feeling at this time."

Five men, aged 16, 18, 20, 22 and 41, have been arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to murder and remain in custody for questioning.

A 36 year old woman from Essex was arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender and has now been released under investigation while inquiries continue.