Close friend of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence pulls out of the race to be London's next mayor

A close friend of murdered teenager Stephen Lawrence has pulled out of the race to be London's next mayor.

Duwayne Brooks Credit: PA

Duwayne Brooks, who was with Stephen on the night he was stabbed to death 22 years ago, was hoping to be the Liberal Democrat candidate in 2016.

Brooks, a former Lewisham councillor, was named today as one of two Lib Dems on the party's shortlist along with London Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon.

Credit: PA

But the Liberal Democrats then revealed he was no longer taking part in the contest because of his role in a review of stop and search by police in Northamptonshire.

Unfortunately Duwayne Brooks has since withdrawn from the Mayoral selection owing to a new professional commitment with a Police Authority which prevents him from going forward.

– Liberal Democrat statement

Brooks told ITV News his new commitment meant he was unable to take part in the mayoral hustings.

I would love to have been involved, I would have loved to have been selected by the party because it would have changed the dynamic of the debate. I'm probably going to be up here for six to eight weeks. I'm not going to make all the debates so I'm pulling out.

– Duwayne Brooks

The decision means Caroline Pidgeon is on a 'shortlist' of one and almost guaranteed to win her party's nomination next month.

It is a shame Duwayne Brooks has had to withdraw from the Mayoral selection contest but I wish him well in his new role reviewing the use of Stop and Search Powers by Northamptonshire Police.

This will be the first big Lib Dem Fightback campaign so there's no limiting what we can achieve.

– Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat