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Last Updated: Thursday, 18 October 2007, 18:42 GMT 19:42 UK
Shot boy 'was too young to die'
Jonathan Matondo
The teenager had expressed a desire to become a priest
The uncle of a 16-year-old boy who was shot in the head in a playground has said his nephew was "too young to die".

Jonathan Matondo was found dead at a recreation area on Nottingham Cliff in the Burngreave area of Sheffield, South Yorkshire, on Wednesday night.

Armand Vibila called for people to help police catch his nephew's killers to get them off the streets.

He said: "He was only 16 - much too young to die - and much loved by his friends, family and the community."

The teenager was "such a good boy, so funny", said his uncle adding: "This should not happen to our community, this should not happen to my Jonathan.

"So I wish to ask anyone to assist the police . . . If it's possible of this tragedy to assist the police to catch them, and get them out of our street."

The BBC understands that detectives are investigating whether the shooting was linked to another gun incident in Melrose Road, less than a mile from Nottingham Cliff, about three hours before the teenager was killed.

Police remained at the scene of this previous incident on Thursday.

It's up to the community to pull together to bring this person to justice
Councillor Jan Wilson

Speaking alongside Mr Vibila at a news conference, the Reverend Jack Kinsiona said the murdered teenager had expressed ambitions to become a preacher.

Mr Kinsiona, from the Light of Christ Church in Burngreave, cried as he spoke about the youngster.

He said: "Jonathan was a great person, he had been to our church. . . I am crying now . . . I want to ask the government to find who killed Jonathan, because Jonathan was very popular in the church."

Ch Supt Jon House, of South Yorkshire Police, said a post-mortem examination had revealed Jonathan died from a single gunshot wound to the head.

He said young people hung around on street corners in the area but would not comment on whether it constituted a gang culture.

A number of people had come forward with information and it was hoped arrests could be made "shortly", he added.

Councillor Jan Wilson, leader of Sheffield City Council, described the shooting as a "terrible event".

"It's up to the community to pull together to bring this person to justice", she said.

VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
The victim's uncle gives his reaction



SEE ALSO
Teenage gun victim shot in head
18 Oct 07 |  South Yorkshire

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