Duran Kajiama (Dee) was a young man – 17 years old – who lived with his Mum Beatrice near Dagenham East. He went to Chafford Secondary School (now Harris Academy Reinham) and then Palmer’s College in Grays and planned to study IT engineering at university.
Dee was funny and loved to joke. His music producer Ola describes him - “He was humorous, he’s always got jokes” and he loved to make people laugh.
Dee was talented – he loved music and loved to dance. As his Mum Beatrice tells us “Every time I asked him to go and do something, he would dance first. He loved to dance!”. His talents extended to rap, and he and friends from the local area rapped in a local rap group which, according to his music producer, were on the verge of getting a record deal.
On 12th November 2016, Dee and his friend were walking to a birthday party in Dagenham. They were approached by a boy who was acting aggressively and, in an altercation outside a fast food store, Dee was stabbed in the stomach and his friend was stabbed three times. Dee died shortly afterwards in hospital, but his friend survived.
A boy aged just 16 at the time was convicted for manslaughter (by reason of diminished responsibility) and the attempted murder of Dee’s friend.
Dee’s friend experienced PTSD and paranoia following the attack; he found it difficult to leave the house and had survivor's guilt - how can he be stabbed 3 times and survive, but Dee be stabbed once and die?
The impact of his murder is visible on the local community – it is not difficult to find thousands of tributes to Dee from friends, family and the local community.
“I still can’t believe that he’s not there. It is the silence that makes me understand that he’s not there anymore” – Beatrice, Duran’s Mum.
“I cannot ask God to have another son like him. He was the best”
Duran’s Mum, Beatrice