Yousef Makki death: Boy who lied to police after fatal stabbing sentenced

A teenager who lied to police after he stabbed a grammar school pupil to death will spend eight months in custody.

The boy, aged 17, stabbed Yousef Makki, also 17, in the heart with a flick knife in a tree-lined street in the upmarket village of Hale Barns, Cheshire, on March 2.

Yousef, who was from a single-parent Anglo-Lebanese family from Burnage, south Manchester, had won a scholarship to the prestigious £12,000-a-year Manchester Grammar School.

The defendant, Boy A, admitted perverting the course of justice by lying to police and possession of a flick knife. He was cleared by a jury earlier this month of murder and an alternative count of manslaughter after he said he acted in self-defence.

On Thursday at Manchester Crown Court, Mr Justice Bryan sentenced Boy A to a 12-month detention and training order for perverting the course of justice and a four-month detention and training order for possessing a bladed article, to run consecutively.

A second 17-year-old defendant, Boy B, was cleared of perverting the course of justice by allegedly lying to police about what he had seen but also admitted possession of a flick knife.

Both were also cleared of conspiracy to commit robbery in the lead-up to Yousef’s death.

Boy B was sentenced to a four-month detention and training order.

Both will be released halfway through their sentences under supervision.

Neither of the defendants from wealthy Cheshire families can be named as they are under 18.

Yousef Makki
Yousef Makki had won a scholarship to the prestigious £12,000-a-year Manchester Grammar School (Family Handout/PA)

Sentencing, the judge told the pair: “The backdrop to your offending is depressingly all too familiar  – a warped culture whereby the possession of knives is considered to be ‘cool’ and ‘aesthetically pleasing’ and knives are routinely carried on our streets.

“Mix that with youth as well as drugs and drug dealing, as in the present case, and it is a recipe for disaster and the tragic, but all too predictable, events that unfolded.

“From the evidence I have heard in the course of your trial, it is clear that both of you had an unhealthy fixation with knives which is all too common amongst the youth of today.

“It must stop. There is nothing cool about knives. Their carrying all too often leads to their use and to tragedy, and it is a fallacy that they can keep you safe – very much the reverse, as events all too often demonstrate.

“Knife crime is a cancer on society, and it affects all spectrums of society – the message that must be brought home is that knives kill, and knives ruin lives.

“The best legacy of Yousef’s tragic death would be if this message could be got across – and knives (are) regarded as ‘uncool’ by the young in society going forward.”

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