Date: 15 Nov 2007
Place: Stoke Newington
Etem Celebi was shot in the back around 9.45pm on 17 November 2007.
A man was convicted for his murder in 2009 after an earlier trial which resulted in a hung jury but his conviction was later overturned after his barrister claimed that he had been wrongly identified by two eyewitnesses. The barrister said instead that the murder had been committed by another man that had been a witness for the prosecution and who had refused to come to court to testify. The court also heard that CCTV evidence was found that showed another man that had a very similar appearance to the man that was tried.
Etem Celebi had been with four friends at the time when shots were fired at his group. He was hit when he turned to run away.
The court heard that Etem Celebi had been affiliated with the Smalley Man Dem gang from Smalley Close in Stoke Newington. It was said that his group had been targeted by a rival gang called the Stamford Hill Man Dem gang in a battle over gang territory.
He had been standing on the pavement with friends when two youths with hoods approached and asked them 'What ends you from?'. It was said that Etem Celebi and his group tried to avoid saying they were from Smalley Close but the youths moved towards them and started firing their guns at them. Etem Celebi had then tried to hide behind a car but when he was spotted he tried to run and was shot in the back. The gunman had fired six shots in total, the last of which hit Etem Celebi.
The bullet had entered his back and passed through his stomach and liver. He died from massive internal bleeding almost instantly.
The murder was watched by a friend of Etem Celebi from the window of his house. He said 'He was hiding outside my house behind my mum's car. I was looking out the window and one of the gunmen was right outside my house. Etem ran down the road and there was a couple of shots fired. I thought they were blanks. When I came out of the house, I saw him lying on the floor.'.
At the man's trial it was heard that a friend of Etem Celebi had allegedly threatened one of the Stamford Hill Man Dem gang members and that they had been looking for that friend and that it was possible that no one in the group shot at were the intended targets and that it could have been a case of mistaken identity.
Etem Celebi had played for Islington Borough Football Club, in the Premier Division of the Islington Midweek League.