Tragic stabbing victim named as promising boxer, 18, ‘targeted’ in fatal attack

An 18-year-old man who was stabbed to death in a “targeted attack” in Essex has been named.

Luke Bellfield was attacked in an alleyway near The Peterboat pub in Leigh-on-Sea at about 6pm on Friday, February 26.

He was taken to hospital by two people but he tragically died a short while later.

Essex Police have launched a murder investigation and are treating the incident as ‘targeted’.

A post mortem examination found he died as a result of a single stab wound to the heart.

Flowers and tributes have been laid in Leigh-on-Sea by friends and family in Luke’s memory.

Pictures taken of the tributes left at the scene show large numbers of balloons which have been tied to a fence spelling ‘Luke’ and a blue ’18’ balloon.

Luke was a promising young boxer, who had fought for the iconic Repton Boxing Club in Bethnal Green, east London.

Yesterday, Southend Boxing Club paid tribute to Luke, tweeting: “Very saddened to hear the loss of the extremely talented boxer Luke Bellfield.

“He was stabbed in old Leigh last night, whilst out for a walk #RIPChamp”

Essex Police announced they are trying to trace Alfie Pollard, 17, who has links to Leigh-on-Sea and Southend, and want to speak to him in connection with Luke’s death.

Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Truss, who is leading the murder investigation, said: “I would strongly urge him, or anyone who knows of his whereabouts, to contact police immediately.

“Anybody who is found to be assisting those involved in the violent incident that led to a man’s death on Friday night will be subject of a thorough investigation and could find themselves prosecuted for assisting an offender.”

A 31-year-old man from Westcliff and a 19-year-old man from Rayleigh were arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm.

They remain in custody for questioning.

A dispersal order was in place in Old Leigh and the surrounding area from 5pm yesterday until 2am this morning (February 28).

Officers were also authorised to use additional stop and search powers under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 in the same area during the same timeframe.

This temporary power allowed officers to use stop and search powers without the need to have reasonable grounds to stop someone in order to search people for dangerous objects and weapons.

The Operational Support Group spoke to a number of people and carried out 25 searches. Fortunately no weapons were found. One person was given a community resolution for possession of cannabis.

Over the course of the afternoon and evening, officers dispersed a number of people gathering. There were a small number of reports of anti-social behaviour, which they also responded to.

Friends have set up a GoFundMe page in Luke’s memory. So far over £1,700 has been donated.