A few hours after detectives investigating the murder of the 87-year-old man stabbed in Ealing released a CCTV of a man of interest, an arrest was made.
Thomas O'Halloran, 87, was stabbed while riding his mobility scooter in what detectives described as an unprovoked attack.
The picture of a man running away from the scene was shared on social media leading to the arrest of a 44-year-old man at an address in Southall in the early hours of Thursday, 18 August, on suspicion of murder and remained in custody.
The police have updated his family, and they continue to be supported by specialists. Detective Chief Inspector Jim Eastwood, who leads the investigation, said, "I would reiterate their previous request that their privacy is respected by everyone as they continue to come to terms with their tragic loss."
A murder investigation was launched after police were called at 16:06 on Tuesday, 16 August, to Runnymede Gardens at the junction with Cayton Road, Greenford, after O'Halloran was stabbed.
Detectives believe that O'Halloran was attacked and stabbed in Western Avenue shortly before 16:06hrs on Tuesday, 16 August, before he managed to travel 75 yards on his mobility scooter to Runnymede Gardens, where he sought help from a member of the public.
A murder investigation was launched after police were called at 16:06hrs on Tuesday, 16 August, to Runnymede Gardens, at the junction with Cayton Road, Greenford, to report a man with stab wounds.
Officers and London Ambulance Service responded, but despite the effort, the 87-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene.
Eastwood said, "I would like to thank the public for their overwhelming support following this horrific incident. As a result of the release of a CCTV image yesterday, an arrest has been made, and this investigation is progressing at pace.
Detectives are appealing to anyone with useful information to upload it using this online form.
Informants are also advised to call the incident room on 020 8358 0300, quoting 4691/16AUG.
Detectives from the Met's Specialist Crime Command are leading the investigation.
Alternatively, you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555 111 or visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org.
Twitter Users React to the murder of Thomas O'Halloran
His death has caused reactions across England as many accused the media of not giving it enough attention, as in the case of George Floyd, an American murdered on the street by the police.
A Twitter user PiranPirate, with the username @allpilgrim, posted, "The media were full of the name "Darius" (I've since discovered that he was a singer, died young, and that is sad). I don't think many would forget George Floyd either. Pity the same prominence isn't given to Thomas O'Halloran. It's almost like the media are scared to say his name.
Another user, Ruth, posted, "I would like Thomas O’Halloran to be our George Floyd moment. Outrage, action and change. White Lives Matter."
A user, TBCFC, posted, "87 yr old man in a mobility scooter gets stabbed to death in the middle of the day, and it barely registers on the news. 30 years ago, it would have shocked bods; now it's just, oh how awful, but no surprise. What have they done to our cities? RIP Thomas O'Halloran"
Another user, BermondseyBoy, posted, "I haven't commented on the stabbing death of 87-year-old Thomas O'Halloran in his mobility scooter because anger gets you nowhere. What is needed is action to take scum off the streets. Instead, we have an old bill with pronouns dressing up like the Village People, dancing to YMCA."
The poster added, "So the old bill have nicked a well-known shoplifter for the stabbing of Thomas O'Halloran, 87. Banned from local shops whose face was caught on CCTV holding a bloodied knife plastered all over social media and the news. They didn't need Sherlock Holmes for this case."
Lucy Keaveney posted, Such a senseless killing. Thomas O'Halloran was the "kind old man" with a beard who busked outside his local train station in London, most recently raising money for victims of the war in #Ukraine. Communities in Ennistymon & London will mourn him. RIP.
Mayor of London Condemns attack
Meanwhile, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, described the killing of Thomas O'Halloran as "shocking and heartbreaking."
On his post via his verified Twitter handle on Wednesday evening, Mayor Khan added, "His loved ones are in my thoughts and prayers. To those who may have been passing the A40, please check your dashcams & cycle helmet cameras - you may have footage that can help the police.©Standard Gazette, 2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s publisher is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Standard Gazette with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.