Weather presenter Alex Beresford has spoken of the fatal stabbing of his cousin, saying: “It can happen to anybody”.
Nathaniel Armstrong, 29, was killed in west London, just days after the Good Morning Britain presenter interjected in a live TV debate on knife crime.
Beresford told Good Morning Britain that his cousin was “not in a gang, he went to a good school, university…”
And he said of the spate of stabbings: “I understand why people will look at it and say this is a black problem … It’s not, it’s a problem up and down the UK in lots of different communities.”
Beresford told the ITV show: “No-one would have expected it, especially after I spoke out. You couldn’t make it up.
“It’s come as a big surprise that it’s happened to Nathaniel … he is 29, not in a gang, he went to a good school, university…”
He said: “He was a big guy. He was like 6ft 6in, 6ft 7in – when you spoke to him you were literally looking up.
“I guess on the outside some people could have been intimidated by him but he wasn’t that person – everyone said he was a big friendly giant.
“For this to happen to him, everyone was quite shocked. He wasn’t really a fighter, he was someone who would talk his way out of something.”
The stabbing came 11 days after the weather presenter said that prison was “not a deterrent” as he intervened in a knife crime debate on Good Morning Britain.
Beresford said: “It literally can happen to anybody. That’s why I was saying on the show, it is about environment…
“Poverty, we have not solved that, this is why a lot of people are finding themselves in these situations … something just needs to be done.
“I think this happening only reaffirms what I was saying about the environment and also about prisons and that they are not always a deterrent.”
He said: “There are some people that will be deterred by a bigger (prison) sentence but for lots of boys that are committing these crimes, they don’t care.
“If you are prepared to pick up a knife and stab someone, or risk your own life, you are prepared to give your life, it’s not a deterrent,” he said.
“This person who has done this to my cousin, he has also ruined his life, the ripple effect goes wider, it affects his family as well.”
Asked about what happened, he said: “The person, we can’t find him at the moment. Nathaniel is not here to tell his side of the story.
“We have seen the CCTV where they are talking … They disappear off camera and what happened, happened. As I understand it, it was a single stab wound that took his life.”
Mr Armstrong was stabbed around 100 metres from his Fulham home in the early hours of the morning, amid reports of a fight.
He died in Gowan Avenue shortly before 1am – the same street where TV presenter Jill Dando was murdered 20 years ago.