'Not everyone who knows something has come forward' say police hunting teen's killer

  • Detective Superintendent Andy Howard speaking to ITV News Meridian reporter Ciaran Fitzpatrick at the crime scene 6 years after the incident

Detectives investigating the murder of a teenager in Oxford 6 years ago - say someone holds the crucial piece of information they need to bring his killer to justice.

16-year-old Harun Jama was found with stab wounds on a towpath near Friars Wharf on 3 January 2018. He was taken to hospital but later died.

A number of people have been arrested, but no one has ever been charged. On the 6th anniversary of his death, Thames Valley Police have issued a new appeal for fresh information.

It's a particularly tricky case due to the lack of CCTV in the area at the time, meaning officers must rely on witnesses.

Harun was found fatally stabbed on a towpath next to the River Thames in Oxford. Credit: Thames Valley Police

Detective Superintendent Andy Howard, who is leading the force's investigation, says it's likely not everyone who knows something has come forward.

"The vital piece of information about what happened that night and who was responsible for Harun's murder is known by some of those people that were present," said Howard.

"And that for me is the crucial piece of information that will allow us to bring Harun's killer to justice."

He's also sure that they people they have already spoken to know more than they have previously told officers.

"From within the large number of people we have spoken to particularly at The Mound where the altercation started," Howard said. "I'm confident there were people there who know more than what they have so far divulged to the investigation."

Officers "recognise why that may be the case" as allegiances and alliances at the time were strong. They hope six years on from that night, "as people's circumstances change" so will these allegiances.

  • In an area with little street lights and at the time no CCTV, Andy Howard shows Ciaran Fitzpatrick what happened that night and why their case heavily relies on witnesses

A 2021 inquest heard Harun had travelled to Oxford from his hometown of Birmingham 10 days earlier to deal drugs. Harun was later found and arrested by police.

It's thought in order to repay the debt to his dealer for losing the drugs, he was sent back to the city several times.

Thames Valley Police have been working with West Midlands Police from the outset of the case, particularly if it impacts individuals in their region, but most importantly Harun's family have had family liaison officers involved from the beginning.

His mother has often spoke of her heartbreak in the wake of his death, urging anyone to come forward with any information so she can have closure.

Hibo Fidow, Harun's mother, appealing to the media in 2018. Credit: ITV News

Howard told ITV News Meridian said it's been a "very difficult time for them" as the person responsible has not been brought to justice.

"Harun was 16 years old, he was a child. Regardless of the backdrop and the circumstances as to why he was in Oxford, nothing justifies the killing of a 16 year old.

"Harun's family deserves the right that person held account and deserve the right to justice.

"I appeal to those people present that night to come forward with the information they hold because I believe that is key to getting justice for Harun's family."

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