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PC Blakelock hacked to death in 'free for all'

PC Blakelock curled up in a ball and screamed for help as a mob hacked him to death during the Broadwater Farm riots, an eyewitness has told the Old Bailey.

Using the pseudonym John Brown and with his voice distorted by a modulator to protect his identity, the witness described how he saw the killing on the estate in Tottenham, north London, on October 6 1985.

He explained that he had seen Nicky Jacobs, 45, stabbing PC Blakelock with a machete between two and four times as the frenzied mob took part in a "free for all".

Robbery at Sunderland shop

Robbers wielding a pair of scissors have stolen cash from a shop in Sunderland. Two men went into the News 2000 shop on Roker Avenue at 8.15pm on Sunday March 9 and threatened a member of staff.

The member of staff was not injured but was left shaken.

Police are appealing for witnesses to contact them.

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Sunderland man jailed after firearms found in house

A man has been jailed for five years after police found disguised firearms a his home.Neil Robinson, 42, had one stun-gun, which looked like a mobile phone, in his house and two more in the shed.Possession of such weapons result in a mandatory minimum sentence of five years behind bars.

Robinson, of Ramillies Road, Sunderland, admitted possession of three disguised firearms.

Sunderland honours Nissan executive

Trevor Mann CBE, Nissan's Executive Vice President, spoke about being given the Freedom of the City of Sunderland at a ceremony today.

"I am deeply proud to be conferred with the Honorary Freedom of the City of Sunderland, where I enjoyed living and working for many happy and fulfilling years.

The honour is a reflection of the many achievements of our UK plant and a mutually supportive partnership spanning three decades between Nissan and Sunderland City Council.

Of course none of Nissan Sunderland plant's success would have been possible without the dedication and contribution of my colleagues at the plant, so I would like to thank them all for their hard work and outstanding performance over many years."

– Trevor Mann CBE

Freedom of Sunderland for Nissan's Mann

Trevor Mann CBE Credit: Nissan

Trevor Mann CBE, one of Nissan's top executives, is being given the Freedom of Sunderland at a ceremony today.

He is Nissan's Executive Vice President, having risen through the ranks since joining the company in 1985.

He is being granted Honorary Freedom of the City of Sunderland in recognition of the example he sets to the city's young people, and his personal contribution to the economic well-being of the city and people of Sunderland, according to the city council.

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Pc Blakelock murder trial: "no training" for riot gear

The court also heard a statement from Pc Richard Coombes, who was beaten unconscious during the rioting.

Pc Coombes, who the jury has already heard was "lucky to be alive", received facial injuries, cuts and missing teeth during the onslaught.

The court heard that he had "no training or instruction" to use the riot gear he was issued with on the night of the riot.

"My feeling during this riot was that those doing the rioting attacked us with such ferocity and determination that I believe they wanted to do us serious harm,

It made me fear for my life."

– Pc Richard Coombes

Pc Blakelock murder trial hears from witness

Alan Tappy, who served alongside Pc Keith Blakelock, gave evidence in court today.

He explained that as the officers tried to escape a mob, he became aware of a "bundle on the grass" whom the mob were "stabbing and clubbing".

"Keith was lying face-down and I thought he was dead. Pengelly (the unit's sergeant) was at the front of us, kneeling down to his left.

We grabbed hold of Keith's shoulders and made an attempt to move him but couldn't.

I remember one side of his neck had a wound, a gaping wound."

– Pc Alan Tappy

"Flamethrower attack" on riot police

Pc Keith Blakelock's unit came under attack with a "flame-type thrower" before he was hacked to death during riots in 1985, a jury has heard.

The riots saw a group of police officers trying to protect firefighters from a mob of around 150 youths on the Broadwater Farm estate.

The trial of Nicky Jacobs for the murder of Pc Blakelock heard that bricks, bottles and petrol bombs were thrown at police.

In a statement given two days after the riots and read out in court by prosecutor Richard Whittam QC, one officer said he had seen "shiny knives" and a "flame-type thrower".

Nicky Jacobs denies murder and the trial continues.

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