The victim of a fatal stabbing in Greenwich has been named locally as 31-year-old dad Danny Pearce.

Mr Pearce was on his way home from a night out with his girlfriend at a jazz bar around midnight on July 14-15 when two muggers on a moped wearing motorbike helmets approached him in King William Walk, his friend said today (July 17).

The thieves were armed with a kitchen knife and a pistol and demanded his possessions but he refused and initially thought the muggers were joking.

But moments later one of the attackers jumped off the moped and lashed out with a "big kitchen knife" and stabbed Mr Pearce in the throat as a woman screamed "no, no, no", a source said.

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Tributes at the scene. Photo: Jake Bacon

Locals also heard around 12 shots fired but the dad-of-one is not believed to have suffered gunshot injuries.

Police and London Ambulance Service were called to the scene at 12.15am but Mr Pearce was pronounced dead at the scene.

A friend who came to lay flowers at the spot he died said: "He was with his girlfriend and was stabbed in the throat, I've known him since I was about 14.

"They wanted his watch, I think it was an expensive watch, about £5,000, it must have been a Rolex or something and he had a good phone.

"They tried to take his stuff and there was a boy holding out a gun and because he didn't give it to them the other guy jumped off the moped and stabbed him in the neck.

"Danny was not the kind of guy to start trouble, he was on his phone trying to get a lift home, he was with his girlfriend and his friend's girlfriend."

Pointing at a child's drawing marked 'to daddy, love Gracie' among the bouquets of flowers, he added: "It's the drawing from his daughter Grace that makes me so sad, it just makes you think doesn't it."

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Dozens of flowers, a Chelsea scarf and "daddy" balloons were attached to the railings along the pavement where he died.

One note attached to flowers read: "Danny, I don't want to believe you're gone.

"I love you so much, our friendship and memories will stay with me for the rest of my life."

An eyewitness who watched as the horrific scenes unfolded said: "It happened within about two minutes, I was watching from my window and the muggers were obviously challenging them.

"This was a group of people who were having a nice time.

"I heard the screaming first, that woke me up and then the banging which sounded like fireworks.

"The muggers were wearing crash helmets, one was on the bike and another off it holding a big kitchen knife.

"There were so many people running to help, but police said they could not have stopped it from happening."

Barman Alex Gwillim, who works at the Greenwich Tavern, just yards from where Mr Pearce died, said: "They were coming out of Oliver's Jazz Bar and these guys came off the moped and said 'give us your watch'.

"Two of my colleagues were turning the lights off at the pub when it all unfolded and they heard the screams, it was chaos."

Another witness, who refused to be named, heard 12 shots fired beneath his window.

He said: "There were about a dozen shots I'd say, but they were not very loud, sounded as if they were from a pistol.

"Then the woman was screaming 'no, no, no', that was what woke me up."

Detectives from the homicide and major crime command are investigating and “retain an open mind as to the motive”.

Detective Inspector Jo Sidaway, who is leading the investigation, said: “At this early stage it is understood the victim was approached on King William Walk by two suspects on a moped.

“One suspect is believed to have been in possession of what appeared to be a firearm, the other a knife.

“During an altercation between the suspects and the victim, the victim was stabbed.

“The suspected firearm was discharged but enquiries continue regarding this.

“The suspects then fled the scene on the moped, and the victim then managed to make his way to a nearby address to ask for help. He was later pronounced dead there.

“I am appealing for any witnesses to any part of the incident, or anyone with any information, to contact our incident room and assist our investigation.”

Anyone that can assist the investigation can contact the incident room on 020 8721 4005, or police via 101 or Twitter @MetCC.

To give information anonymously call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org

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