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Two arrested after man stabbed to death while trying to stop moped theft

Published 14/09/2016

Police were called to the crime scene in Chadwell Heath
Police were called to the crime scene in Chadwell Heath

Two men have been arrested after a 27-year-old was fatally stabbed as he confronted a gang of moped thieves with his father, Scotland Yard said.

The victim, named by police as Ricky Hayden, died after the attack outside their home in Chadwell Heath, east London.

Mr Hayden, a council worker, also worked in security and had acted as a bodyguard for high-profile celebrities including footballer Peter Crouch and model Abbey Clancy.

His 46-year-old father, Paul, suffered knife wounds, but his injuries are not described as life-threatening.

Two men were arrested on suspicion of murder in the early hours of Wednesday and remain in custody.

The father and son saw a group of up to four men attempting to steal a moped after hearing a disturbance outside their home in Gibbfield Close at around 1.25am on Tuesday, Scotland Yard said.

They were taken to an east London hospital where Mr Hayden was pronounced dead. His father remains in hospital.

The brother and sister of Mr Hayden gathered at the scene of the attack on Wednesday afternoon, where tributes have been laid to their brother.

April and Perry Hayden, 23 and 20, looked at notes left on flowers and cried with dozens of friends who lined the street just yards away from bloodstains behind a police cordon.

Miss Hayden has changed her profile picture on Facebook to show her lying over her brother's hospital bed.

Neighbour Bella Tasci, 34, heard s creams as the men were stabbed in the altercation, before the thieves fled the scene without the moped.

The family dog, Roxy, was also slashed in the attack, she said.

Miss Tasci described how she heard cries of "get off him" as Mr Hayden and his father confronted around four "young black men" who made their getaway on two motorbikes.

She said they were a "lovely" family and Mr Hayden had built the bike himself with his younger brother Perry.

Mr Hayden was a member of the highways maintenance team at Havering Council.

He also worked in security and in 2011 was pictured working at the wedding of Crouch and Clancy, as the couple stepped out of their car after tying the knot.

Andrew Blake-Herbert, chief executive of Havering Council, said: "Everyone at the council is devastated by the news of this horrendous, senseless crime.

"Our condolences and thoughts are with Ricky's family and friends, our prayers are also with his father who remains in hospital.

"Ricky was a well-liked team member and of course we will be offering support to his friends and colleagues in the council who will be feeling this loss very deeply."

Tracy Aubrey, 50, who has known Mr Hayden since he was young, described him as "the nicest boy you could ever meet, he was always joking and absolutely lovely".

She said her daughter went to school with him and was "in pieces" at the news.

"Nobody would have a bad word to say about him," she added.

Detectives from the Metropolitan Police's Homicide and Major Crime Command appealed for anyone who may have seen or heard anything to come forward.

Detective chief inspector Andrew Packer said: "Gibbfield Close is a residential street and while there would not have been many people out and about at the time of this attack, it was a warm night and people would have had their windows open.

"I am appealing to anyone who heard, or subsequently saw, anything suspicious to come forward and speak to police."

Any witnesses and anyone with any information are asked to call police via 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or visit

For the past five years, Mr Hayden had worked regularly as a doorman at Kosho bar in Romford.

General manager Jose Martins described him as the "happiest, funniest guy" who would "always bring the mood up".

"Ricky was one of the most loved guys by the staff and customers," he said.

"He was one of the most genuinely happy guys I have ever worked with.

"He will always be present in my thoughts."

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