A jury returned a guilty verdict on 5 July following trial earlier this year. Reporting restrictions have been lifted today meaning the boy has been named as Marcel Grzeszcz of Boston (pictured).
This has been a meticulous investigation which began on the morning of 12 December 2020 when we were called to Alcorn Green in Fishtoft at 10.22 am. Roberts was found deceased in a common area at the rear of the street. He had suffered fatal stab wounds to his neck, chest and abdomen.
On the 13 December, the defendant, 14 years of age at the time, was arrested. He was charged with the murder of Roberts the following day.
Detective Chief Inspector Richard Myszczyszyn, of the East Midlands Special Operations Unit, said: “This is an utterly tragic case. I would like to pay tribute to the people who loved Roberts, and had to deal with losing him in such brutal and horrific circumstances. Their support for our investigation has been unwavering, and their bravery has been an inspiration. Nothing could bring Roberts back, but our commitment was to try to find some semblance of justice for a grieving family and community.
“The act was utterly senseless and the consequences, devastating. It will be remembered by Officers and Staff as one of the worst and saddest cases we have ever dealt with. The level of violence, and that it involved children, makes it almost incomprehensible.
“The diligence and dedication displayed by the team who responded and investigated was a credit to our Force and hopefully of some reassurance to the community as they continue to come to terms with this distressing and disturbing incident.
“Roberts’s future was stolen and that is an injustice that cannot be undone. We hope today’s sentence might at least offer some closure to those affected.
“It’s a stark and chilling lesson on the potential devastation of knife crime. If you, as a parent or a child, have any concerns about knives, please talk to us. We can all play a part in building a future free of such desperately sad and unnecessary loss of life. We will educate and engage on knife crime and we will continue to relentlessly pursue justice for victims; as we do so, we will remember Roberts.”