On Saturday 10th March Daniel, Daina and Elliot met up with some friends in a pub in Finchley. “Ihey had a few quiet drinks and as closing time approached decided to go into a Chicken Express in Finchley Road for a meal.
()ne of their group asked if they could have their hamburger buns tomsted. The man behind the counter refused. A bit of an argument developed and I)aniel and friends decide to leave and eat elsewhere.
They walked outside and were attacked by a group of about 8 people either from the Chicken Express or from a superette thaghey-ewn which was two doors away. The same family owned both shops.
Daniel was felled and dropped backwards onto the footpath. Elliot and one Other of the group were also punched.
Daniel was rushed to Royal Free Hospital jnfflamstea&deeply unconscious and was put on life support. He, and Daina and Elliot were supported by a vigil of their group of close friends to keep I)aniel going.
David and Alison (Daniel’s Dad & Mum) and Matthew (Daniel’s elder brother) rushed 12,000 miles from New Zealand and reached Daniel’s bedside just before he died at 4.30pm on Monday 12th March 2001. Carol and Barry (Daina’s parents) weren’t able to arrive until early Tuesday morning.
Initially people were arrested and later released.without charges being laid. The
Police investigation, under the control of Detective Inspector Charles Hailstone to a reported to the Crown Prosecution Service who decided that there was not enough evidence to identify the person or persons who hit and killed Daniel.
In September 2002, 18 months after Daniel’s death. Aan-C+F•eneEs inquest was held at the Saint Pancras Coroners Court. in-September-2002: The
Keys family and Daina were represented by a London barrister Mr Stephen Rose. Three of the accused men, all of whom had been summonsed to appear did a “no show”. This limited the ability of the Coroner to get to the truth of what happened.
After two days of listening to various statements from the Police. accused. Daina. Elliot and other friends the Coroner came back an “Open” verdict. This means that Daniel’s death was not accidental, but criminal culpability could not be established.