The mother of murdered Bellingham boy has released a heart-wrenching statement as an 18-year-old teen faces a life sentence for his brutal killing.

Jay Hughes, 15, was waiting for a friend outside of a Morleys chicken shop in Bellingham on November 1 when he was randomly attacked and fatally stabbed in the chest.

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"Kind-hearted" Jay Hughes. Credit: Met Police

Nyron Baptiste, 18 and of Penge had been previously been found guilty of Jay’s murder on July 20.

He appeared at the Old Bailey on August 2 where he was sentenced to life imprisonment and told he must serve a minimum term of 19 years.

He also received four months detention for possessing an offensive weapon, to be served concurrently.

He had not previously been named due to his age, but Baptiste has now turned 18.

The Judge stated that she was in no doubt that the “brazen, quick and ruthless attack” was planned and that Nyron had intended to kill the victim.

The court heard how Jay was speaking with a young man he knew when a black Ford Galaxy pulled up to the junction of Brookhowse Road with Randlesdown Road.

Three men, armed with large machete type knives, got out of the car and ran towards Jay and his acquaintance.

However Jay did not run and CCTV showed him innocently waiting outside the shop.

It was at this point that the defendant approached Jay and proceeded to stab him once in the left hand side of his upper body.

A witness later told police they heard the person who stabbed Jay say, "I got one" and that Jay did not say or do anything to provoke the attack.

After stabbing Jay, the boys ran back towards their getaway vehicle.

The other two armed suspects who had chased, but not caught, the other boy then ran back to the car, which reversed and drove off at speed.

Emergency services rushed to the scene to revive the innocent victim, however the stab wound had pierced Jay’s heart and despite every effort he was pronounced dead at 8:15pm at King's College Hospital.

On Friday, November 23 officers visited the Baptiste's address in Penge to carry out an arrest, but he had fled the area.

Following enquires he was later arrested in Gravesend, December 10, after an officer recognised him as he walked along the street.

On arrest, a large hunting knife was found in the waistband of his trousers and he was further arrested for possession of a bladed article.

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A community mourned the loss of young Jay.

Jay’s mother, Cindy Hughes. in her victim impact statement said: “Jai was my first son and was very special to me.

"I was proud of the young man he was becoming and proud to call him my son.

"I loved his zest for life, his confidence, his positivity, his fantastic sense of humour his constant smile and most of all his kind heart.

"We shared some great times together joking and laughing as he reminded me so much, of myself at his age. He was just a normal teenager but was always respectful, which was a quality he also tried to instil in his younger brothers.

"During the last nine months I have been through, and am still going through a range of emotions – shock, devastation, confusion, anger, denial.

"I am so empty and sad inside it is heart-wrenching. It is like a part of me has died as well."

Speaking on the case, Detective Sergeant Anthony Atkin, who works in Homicide part of Specialist Crime said: "Jay Hughes was just a 15-year-old boy who was simply buying food and waiting for a friend to spend the evening at a youth club; this could have been anyone’s child that evening.

"What Jay did not know, was that at that moment Nyron Jean-Baptiste had armed himself with a large knife and set out with others intent on violence.

"Nyron indiscriminately stabbed Jay in the chest piercing his heart and then boasted that he had ‘got one’ as he ran back to the car.

"I am at a loss to understand how anyone could carry out such a wickedly despicable act."

"My heart goes out to Jay’s family who are obviously devastated by the loss of their precious young child. I can only hope that the sentenced passed today will help in some small way.

"Lastly I would also like thank those people who came to Jay’s aid and those who came forward and assisted the investigation.

"Many people came to help that night and it is important that when wickedness has been done, the good that lies within a community is not forgotten."