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Families appeal for information one year after deadly Brixton Academy crush | UK News

Families of two people killed during a gig at a south London music venue have renewed pleas for information, a year on from the incident.

Gaby Hutchinson, 23, and Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, were both killed at the O2 Brixton Academy on 19 December when people without tickets attempted to force their way into a show featuring Asake.

The venue was saved from permanent closure after the Metropolitan Police asked the local council to remove its licence – but Lambeth Council allowed it to continue operating on the basis it meets “77 extensive and robust new conditions”.

On Friday, the force released images of people they are trying to speak to in connection to the crush, adding one arrest has already been made.

Ms Hutchinson’s sisters Kelsey and Nina, and Ms Ikumelo’s parents Yetunde Olodo and Anthony Ikumelo, relaunched an appeal for information.

Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, of Newham. Pic: Met Police
Image:
Rebecca Ikumel. Pic: Met Police

Mr Ikumelo called his daughter an “angel”, adding there “are still lots of questions to be answered”.

“We don’t know what happened to her, we don’t know how she died and we’re still waiting for information as to how this happened.

“The most important thing is we don’t want this to happen to another family, so the earlier we have this information the better so that other people could be prevented from suffering the same loss in future.”

Ms Olodo, 60, of Stratford in east London, added: “We just want justice. She has two young children, they are asking questions now ‘Where is mummy? When is mummy coming back?’

“What can we tell them? They are only five and seven, they don’t seem to understand what is happening.

“All we want is justice for Rebecca, for people to come forward and say what they know about the incident.”

Gabrielle Hutchinson has been named as the second woman to have died after a crush at the Asake concert in Brixton on Thursday
Image:
Gaby Hutchinson. Pic: Met Police

Nina Hutchinson, 32, of Gravesend in Kent, added: “A time machine would be great. If we could go back to before then and tell her not to go to work, but that’s not going to happen so it is just doing what we need to do as a family.”

Kelsey Hutchinson said she feels “heartbroken” one year on, adding: “It’s like having an emptiness in your chest, like the world is now upside down and wrong. Just living is hard, really hard.”

She added she would like to see Asake issue his own appeal for fans with information to come forward.

Read more:
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From December 2022: Chaos outside Asake gig after crush

The Met’s senior investigating officer, Detective Chief Inspector Nigel Penney, said: “We’re keen to address the tragic incident that happened 12 months ago with our investigation, and we want to let people know that we are still tirelessly working extremely hard, trying to ascertain the actual detail of how this tragic event happened.

“We are continuing our plea to those that did attend that night to come forward and tell us exactly what they saw.”

He added: “We have made one arrest and we’ve conducted four interviews. The arrest was made in October.”

Screen grab taken from CCT footage dated 15/12/22 of "Male A", one of 13 people police are trying to identify in the investigation into the crushing incident at the O2 Academy Brixton which killed two people. ecurity guard Gaby Hutchinson, 23, and Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, were killed when fans without tickets tried to force their way into a show by Nigerian artist Asake. Issue date: Friday December 15, 2023.
Image:
‘Male A’, one of 13 people police are trying to identify in the investigation into the crushing incident

Screen grab taken from CCT footage dated 15/12/22 of "Male C", one of 13 people police are trying to identify in the investigation into the crushing incident at the O2 Academy Brixton which killed two people. ecurity guard Gaby Hutchinson, 23, and Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, were killed when fans without tickets tried to force their way into a show by Nigerian artist Asake. Issue date: Friday December 15, 2023.
Image:
‘Male C’

Screen grab taken from CCT footage dated 15/12/22 of "Male A", one of 13 people police are trying to identify in the investigation into the crushing incident at the O2 Academy Brixton which killed two people. ecurity guard Gaby Hutchinson, 23, and Rebecca Ikumelo, 33, were killed when fans without tickets tried to force their way into a show by Nigerian artist Asake. Issue date: Friday December 15, 2023.
Image:
‘Male G’

According to Gerald Gouriet KC, who represented the police force at a licencing meeting, about 1,000 people were outside the venue, with officers finding “large-scale disorder” with the crowds.

Representatives of Asake have been approached for comment.

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