A PAIR of “drill” rappers who appeared on former BBC Radio 1 DJ Tim Westwood’s YouTube channel have been jailed today for murdering an innocent filmmaker.
Devone Pusey, 20, and Kai Stewart, 18, stabbed Dean Pascal-Modeste, 22, to death after a feud played out in rap videos published by 60-year-old Westwood.
Getty – Contributor Westwood has been accused of profiting from gang threat music videos
An Old Bailey judge has warned of the dangers surrounding drill music, which sees young rappers taunt and threaten each other through explicit lyrics.
Both men appeared in YouTube videos for Lewisham’s “B side gang” which mocked their rivals from the “Splash gang”.
The victim was not affiliated with any gang but he was knifed up to 14 times as he made his way to a recording session with two men associated with Splash.
Two teenagers, Alex Scott and Corey Donaldson, both 18, have already been convicted of murder and jailed for life with minimum terms of 18 years.
Central News Dean Pascal-Modeste was an innocent filmmaker and producer caught up in the feud
Central News ‘B Side’ members appear in a drill rap video
Stewart, who fled to Jamaica after the killing, and Pusey were both convicted of murder earlier this month after a second trial at the Old Bailey.
Judge Nicholas Cooke, QC, remanded both men in custody ahead of being sentenced today, and warned that those attracted to drill music may be putting themselves in the sights of warring gangs.
He said: “This is yet another dreadful example of London’s knife crime, gangs interested in using violence solely because someone comes from a different district or post code.
“Such violence is often fuelled by musical taunts online, posted on YouTube or other social media outlets.
Central News Alex Scott was jailed earlier this month
Central News Corey Donaldson has also been jailed over the incident
“Music, of course, does not kill people. Music is a great cause for good, whatever genre or type. But there is legitimate concern about the glamorisation of violence in some of the material we hear in these cases and this is a good example of this.”
He added: “In this particular case, Dean Pascal-Modeste was a wholly innocent person.
“He played no part in gangs and that was common ground with the defence and prosecution in the trial and it needs to be stressed.
“He was, however, attracted to this music. That is an unusual feature and it placed him in harm’s way.
“So, if I can persuade those who might be attracted to this genre that it puts you potentially in the company of persons who are dangerous company and it puts you in the line of sight of these warring gangs.