A 15-year-old boy has today, Wednesday 18 January 2023, been found guilty of the murder of Ian Kirwan.

53-year old Ian was murdered on Tuesday 8 March 2022 outside Asda on Jinnah Road in Redditch.

The 15-year-old, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was convicted at Birmingham Crown Court.

Three other boys, two aged 14 and one aged 16, who also cannot be named for legal reasons, were found guilty of violent disorder.  

They will be sentenced on 15 February 2023 at Birmingham Crown Court.

The group travelled by train from Birmingham to Redditch and made their way to Asda, where they stabbed Ian at the entrance to the supermarket. The unprovoked attack happened after Ian spoke to the group about their anti-social behaviour in the toilets of the store. 

The 53-year-old died at the scene, despite the best efforts of paramedics and members of the public who tried to help.

Following enquiries and help from the public to identify potential witnesses, five boys were arrested.

Senior Investigating Officer, Detective Superintendent Leighton Harding, said: “This was an appalling attack on an innocent man going about his daily life, which caused shock and upset in the local community.

“I’m pleased that justice has been done today for Ian and our thoughts remain with his family and friends, who have shown incredible strength throughout the investigation and the trial.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the public for their help in identifying witnesses that were crucial to this investigation. We had an incredible response to our appeals and the information gathered was critical in securing this conviction.

“I’d also like to thank the team who have worked on this case.  It has been an incredibly complex investigation and they have worked tirelessly to ensure justice for Ian.

“The danger of carrying a knife is painfully obvious in this very sad case.  It is simply unacceptable for anyone to carry a knife”.

“Thankfully, violent behaviour on the streets in our area is a rare occurrence but we continue to work hard to keep our communities safe.  Today’s convictions send a clear message that we will take swift action against anyone who carries a knife or engages in violence.”

Ian’s wife has paid tribute to him, saying: “Ian was a big kid; a wonderful person who was full of love, kindness, and generosity.  I really miss him in my life.  I miss his ways that would drive me crazy but he always made me and our family and friends happy and there was never a day that we wouldn’t laugh when he was with us.  Ian would always make us feel protected, secure, and safe.

“Ian was the better half in our relationship.  He gave people chances, was a fountain of knowledge, and was passionate about the world, peace, politics, animals, health, and education. Ian would have helped anyone, even someone who had done him wrong.  He had the biggest heart, he cared for our family and our friends and always supported them where he could in tough times. 

“The decisions made by the youths on 8th March 2022 didn’t just take my husband from me but it also took my life, my plans for the future and has an impact on all my choices I make in life.

“Normally when a person dies, they are surrounded by loved ones and family but because of the tragic circumstances of Ian’s death, he died alone surrounded by strangers who were kind enough to help him.  Nobody should ever have to die like that.

“I would love to have one more hug with him.  When he left on the evening of 8th March 2022 we said goodbye and love you to each other but I didn’t hug him and I can’t explain how much I wish I had.

“I feel scared of the future.  I cannot think about it as my life moving forward is alone.  Ian was my rock, my soul mate, my husband.  I will never recover from his death.  Ian didn’t deserve to die, he still had so much to live for”.