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Tragic dad in carnival rap

A BOLTON councillor, whose son was stabbed to death at London's Notting Hill carnival, has attacked the policing of the festival.

Dr Nicholas Hanscomb, the scientist son of former Bolton Tory leader John Hanscomb, died in 1991 after being knifed in the thigh as he followed the procession with other members of his religious sect.

This year's carnival, staged just a week ago, saw two young men stabbed to death and 19 others left with knife wounds. Metropolitan police figures have revealed nearly 500 casualties at this year's event.

And fresh controversy surfaced at the weekend following reported comments by an unnamed police constable that officers were discouraged from becoming involved with non-violent crimes.

Senior Metropolitan Police chiefs insist a policy of non-intervention does not exist but last night Cllr Hanscomb spoke of his concern about the policing of the Carribean-style carnival.

He said: "It's most unfortunate that what should be a happy occasion for so many people is being spoiled by a few.

"I do not, however, think that the carnival should be banned as it does bring much enjoyment and presents a valuable opportunity for our multi-cultural society to relax together. "My family and I do, however, believe that it's totally unacceptable that the authorities should turn a blind eye to criminal activities, sheltering under the excuse that there may be greater disorder when arrests are made. This policy merely gives out the message that 'anything goes'."

His comments come just days after he, his wife Norma and daughter Lindsay marked the ninth anniversary of Dr Hanscomb's death.

In April 1992 a Westminster coroner recorded a verdict of unlawful killing after Dr Hanscomb died of a stab wound which severed the femoral artery in his left thigh.

He had collapsed into the arms of a police officer but died three hours later in St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, having suffered a massive loss of blood.

The outstanding academic, 38, who had a Phd in physics and biology, a double first from Cambridge in molecular biology and a doctorate in genetic engineering, had also helped develop the revolutionary genetic fingerprint test used to catch criminals.

But in a tragic twist no one has ever been brought to justice for his murder at the hands of a knifeman who wielded what was described as a Rambo-style hunting knife.



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