Beds, Herts & Bucks

Luton gun victim Paul Foster's widow in plea over 'no snitching'

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Media captionPaul Foster's family says he was in the wrong place at the wrong time

The widow of a man shot dead in Luton a year ago said she believes people have not come forward because of a "no snitching culture".

Father-of-three Paul Foster, 46, was shot in the chest on the Lewsey Farm estate on 9 April 2013.

Appealing for help, Mandy Foster said: "Please do not make this all about the police and the difficulties you may have had with them in the past.

"Individuals have deliberately chosen to hinder police."

Mr Foster, who was known as Big Shyne, died at Luton and Dunstable Hospital.

About 500 mourners attended his funeral, which had a police presence.

'Trust issues'

His death was among a spate of gun-related crime in Luton between January and May last year, which led to armed police patrolling the streets.

A £10,000 reward for information that leads to convictions has been offered for the past six months.

Ms Foster added: "I am more than aware of the community that we are living in, and the 'no snitching' culture, especially amongst our young black men.

"But I am also aware of the ongoing trust issues between our young black men and the police and because of that I wish to make this appeal directly to our young people, and their parents."

Image caption Mr Foster's funeral cortege stopped traffic in May last year

She described Mr Foster as a loving, kind and compassionate son, husband, father, uncle and friend.

"The family are of the opinion that there are several people within this community who are aware of what happened to Paul that night but have chosen not speak to the police because of the no snitching culture," she said.

"I plead that you consider Paul's family, especially his children."

Mr Foster was the uncle of 19-year-old Delaney Brown, who was deliberately mown down and killed by a car in Luton in September 2012.

Kyle Beckford, 22, of Luton, was convicted of murder and given a minimum of 24 years in prison in May last year.

Image caption Paul Foster's death was among 10 shootings in the town in five months

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