Police appeal to Turkish and Kurdish communities after Dalston shooting leaves young girl critically injured

The Metropolitan Police have made an appeal to London’s Turkish speaking communities following a shooting on Kingsland High Street in Dalston on Wednesday that left a young girl fighting for her life and three men injured.

The 9-year-old girl remains in a critical condition after being hit in the drive-by shooting as she was sat with her family at Evin Café Restaurant, a popular Turkish restaurant. The family, who are originally from Kerala, according to a report in the Guardian, had been visiting friends and family on a short break from their home in Birmingham.

The three injured men, who are not related to the girl, were sitting at a table outside the restaurant when a motorbike drove by and shot at them on the evening of Wednesday, 29 May.

Police officers, including firearms specialists, and the London ambulance service raced to the scene after receiving reports of gunshots at around 21:20. All four victims were taken to hospital in east London. One of the three male victims has since been discharged, while another has suffered life-changing injuries.

On Friday, Detective Chief Superintendent James Conway, who is the police chief for the London boroughs of Hackney and Tower Hamlets, gave a press conference near to the scene of the incident, updating the press and public about the victims and the ongoing investigation into the shooting and work to identify the gunman.

“I wanted to update you on the dreadful incident that took place on Kingsland High Street in Hackney, where a young girl and three men were shot. We remain in close contact with our colleagues in the NHS, who have been working around the clock to provide urgent care to the victims, including the young girl, who I’m very sad to say remains in a critical condition,” said DCS Conway.

“Specialist family liaison officers continue to support her family. The thoughts of everyone at the Met remain with the girl and her family at this unimaginably difficult time.

“Two other men aged 44 and 42 remain in hospital in a stable condition, with one facing life-changing injuries. The third man – aged 37 – has been discharged from hospital.”

Detective Chief Superintendent James Conway during a press briefing on Thursday, 30 May, about the shooting in Dalston outside Evin Restaurant the night before
Forensics look for evidence following shooting on Kingsland High Road in Dalston on Wednesday evening, 29 May 2024


DCS Conway then gave details about the distinctive vehicle used in the drive-by shooting.

“We know that the offender fired from a motorbike at approximately 9.20pm on Wednesday evening. This bike was a Ducati Monster, with a white body, red chassis and red wheels. Officers have now established that the motorbike was previously stolen in 2021 from a property in Wembley. At the time of the shooting the bike was displaying the registration plates DP21OXY.

“We are releasing an image of the motorbike today and want to hear from anyone who might recognise it. I am particularly keen to hear from you if you saw it on the day of the incident. Or perhaps you recognise it from being parked up in a driveway or a specific location? Or do you know someone who has been using this bike at any point over the past three years? It may not have always displayed those registration plates.

“Any information – no matter how big or small – could prove vital.”

Appeal to Turkish and Kurdish communities

The senior officer then made a specific appeal to Turkish and Kurdish communities, based on the ethnicity of the three male victims.

“This shocking attack will have had an element of pre-planning. This means there are people who will know something which may be crucial to our investigation.

“Gun crime has no place on the streets of London and this reckless act has left a young child fighting for her life. I am making a direct plea to those with information that might help us to bring those responsible to justice.

“We are specifically reaching out to our Turkish and Kurdish communities, particularly in north and east London, who I know are shocked and appalled by this crime. This is because the three men who were shot have connections with these communities.”

Could shooting be gang related?

Prior to Friday’s briefing, speculation had been rife that the shooting was gang related over drugs, possibly between the Tottenham Boys and their Hackney rivals Bombacılar, with fears growing about a possible retaliation.

Over the years, feuds between these two notorious Kurdish-Turkish crime gangs have resulted in dozens of violent incidents, often involving guns, that have left multiple people dead and injured.

Erim Metto, CEO of the Turkish Cypriot Community Association, who attended Friday’s police press briefing, said: “As a community we are shocked by the incident that occurred at a restaurant in Hackney which has led to four people being shot, including a young child.”

People urged to come forward with information

Metto echoed DSC Conway’s appeal: “We urge anyone from the Turkish and Kurdish communities that may have any information to come forward and speak to police.

“If you do not feel comfortable to speak with police directly, you may do so through your community leaders, your faith leaders, Turkish Police Association or anonymously through Crimestoppers.

“We as a community stand against violence and gun crime.”

Anyone with information can call 101 or the Met’s e dedicated incident room on 020 8345 3865, or they can pass information on anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.