"Someone get me an ambulance."
Rapper Bhoniefas Rexson, aged 19, of Kingsbury, London, was jailed for 14 years after he killed a gang rival at a shopping centre.
He stabbed 21-year-old Gedeon Ngwendema in the chest.
At the time of the killing on May 4, 2021, at Brent Cross Shopping Centre, he was also on police bail on suspicion of murder.
Judge Anthony Leonard QC said the “appalling” violence in front of adults and children at Brent Cross came after Rexson told a friend at Wormwood Scrubs prison that he was looking for a knife “for the ride”.
The teenager searched the internet for a shop selling knives and, less than 35 minutes later, had one tucked in his tracksuit bottoms in the busy shopping centre.
Rexson, a Thugs For Life gang member, came across Mr Ngwendema, who was associated with the rival A9 gang, outside JD Sports “by chance”.
During a brief confrontation, Mr Ngwendema was stabbed in the chest, with the blade piercing his heart.
He stumbled towards Marks and Spencer and collapsed on the concourse where he died.
Shoppers heard the victim saying:
“I’ve been duked [stabbed]. Someone get me an ambulance.”
Rexson ran into JD Sports and, when detained by security guards, he claimed it was “mistaken identity”.
After he was arrested, Rexson dropped the 6cm-long lock-knife down a drain at a police station, from where it was later recovered.
Judge Leonard said Rexson was a “committed and active” member of Thugs For Life and operated the gang’s Instagram account, which featured people with guns.
He also ran a Snapchat account and appeared as a rapper in YouTube music videos with violent lyrics.
Rexson admitted manslaughter and possession of a knife.
He had previous convictions for robbery and having a lock-knife and Rambo-style blade.
Statements from the victim’s family described Mr Ngwendema as having a “heart of gold”.
Judge Leonard said: “I accept you have been subject to attacks in the past with serious violence – this is inevitable as a gang member.
“There is no evidence the deceased was responsible for that violence.”
Rexson was jailed for 14 years with a further four years on an extended licence.
Judge Leonard ordered a charge of murder to lie on file.
Detective chief inspector Linda Bradley, of Scotland Yard, said:
“There are clearly no winners in this case.”
“The tragedy of Gedeon’s death has remained with me throughout this investigation, and again today I wish to express my team’s heartfelt sympathies to his family.
“Rexson has also paid a significant price for what he has admitted was a loss of control.
“There is no doubt in my mind that his gang lifestyle was the reason for his appalling actions that evening.
“I also want to pay tribute to the security staff and management of the Brent Cross Shopping Centre, for their initial response to the incident and subsequent support for the investigation. I am very grateful to them.”