Police chief: 'There is nothing glamorous about the murder of Christopher Lewis'

Detective Superintendent Jim Dunkerley, of West Yorkshire Police's Homicide and Major Enquiry Team
Detective Superintendent Jim Dunkerley, of West Yorkshire Police's Homicide and Major Enquiry Team
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The senior detective in charge of investigating the gang-related murder of Christopher Lewis said there was "nothing glamorous or attractive" about his death.

Detective Superintendent Jim Dunkerley described those involved in the killing as "cowards" who should be ashamed of themselves.

The officer, of West Yorkshire Police's Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, said in a statement issued this afternoon: “When you scratch beneath the surface of the rap videos, gang signs, graffiti and supposed ‘bad man’ status that surrounds the murder of Christopher Lewis, you find only cowardly behaviour that appals all decent and right-thinking members of the community.

"All those involved should be utterly ashamed of what they have done.

“This has been a very challenging investigation, where witnesses were reluctant to come forward through fear of violence, and it took lengthy and painstaking enquiries to build up the evidence that has resulted in these convictions.

“We hope the successful conclusion of this case will provide some sense of justice for Christopher’s family.

"It should also serve as a stark warning to others of the serious penalties that those who involve themselves in crimes such as this can expect.

“West Yorkshire Police continues to work closely with a range of partner agencies to identify young people at risk of involvement in gang activity and to divert them away from it.

"We also have specialist officers at both district and Force level who will continue to target organised crime groups involved in the supply of drugs and the associated criminal use of firearms.”

The officer described how Mr Lewis's family are still struggling with his death.

He said: “He was only twenty-four years of age and had his whole life ahead of him.

"His family have been robbed of any future with him by those responsible for his murder.

“He was shot and fatally wounded in a planned and targeted attack that took place outside his home in broad daylight.

"It was a brutal act that can only be properly described as a cold-blooded execution.

“Regardless of his own involvement in crime, there can never be any justification for taking someone’s life like this.

“The trial has heard a great deal of evidence about the feuding between organised criminal gangs, including the use of firearms, that served as the wider context to his murder.

"It is clear that there are individuals in that world who think they can take that ‘lifestyle’ to the extreme with deadly consequences for their rivals.

“There is absolutely nothing glamorous or attractive about what occurred here."