Home Music intervention Motorcyclists ride in memory of Ryan Passey five years after nightclub murder

Motorcyclists ride in memory of Ryan Passey five years after nightclub murder

Motorcyclists taking part in Ride for Ryan, in memory of Ryan Passey, on the Stourbridge ring road

The sun set on the crowds who came to celebrate the life of the 24-year-old footballer, who was stabbed to death while out with friends at a Stourbridge nightclub in 2017.

The runners set off from The Widders, on Barrack Lane in Cradley, towards Stourbridge High Street, where they passed the former Chicago nightclub where Ryan was killed. They also cycled five laps of the Halesowen ring road to mark five years since Ryan’s death, honking their horns as they passed.

After arriving at their destination, Quatt Bike Café in Bridgnorth, everyone then returned to The Widders for a fun day out which included a DJ, bouncy castle and live music. Donations had to be collected along the way.

This was especially special for the community as it has been three years since the last Ride for Ryan due to the pandemic.

Ryan’s mum, Gillian Taylor, said: “Last time was great and this time I think it’s even better. It’s a great turnout – it’s quite overwhelming.

“There are people who, because of this event, went out and bought a bike.

Motorcyclists taking part in Ride for Ryan, in memory of Ryan Passey, on the Stourbridge ring road

“John Hill (of The Widders) organized this, we’ve been friends with him for years and Ade used to work with him and he does a lot of charity events for other people as well.

“He just thought it would be a nice gesture because we were trying to raise money for legal costs and everything – but it’s not all about that now. It’s about Ryan’s memory.

“During the pandemic, everything stopped, we couldn’t do anything, but his memory is still there. I have nothing to do, for me anyway, to remember him.

“It actually upsets me, I’m really overwhelmed with the number of people showing up.

“It’s not really going to help us, it’s going to help the next person. We just want to raise awareness of the justice system and how it let us down. It’s for the next family, to help them more than us .

“Nothing we do will bring him back.”

Ryan Passey

Ride for Ryan began in 2018 in memory of the footballer who was stabbed to death on August 6, 2017, during a fight on the dance floor in Chicago.

Six months later, an eight-day trial took place at Birmingham Crown Court.

The jury heard that Kobe Murray, who was 19 at the time, admitted to stabbing an unarmed Ryan through the heart with a knife.

Murray told the court the stabbing was an “accident” and that he acted in self-defense while holding a gun he took from a friend.

Although the trial revealed how he lied to the police, he walked out of court after being acquitted of both murder and manslaughter.

The verdict shocked Ryan’s devastated family and friends and sparked a campaign for justice that continues to this day.

The last 12 months have seen a number of significant developments in their fight.

After pushing for more than a year, the campaign succeeded in getting West Midlands Police to agree to an independent review of the initial investigation into Ryan’s death.

A Ryan memorial plaque was unveiled at the former Chicago nightclub in Stourbridge in 2019

The review, which is being run by West Yorkshire Police, is ongoing and an update is expected in the coming weeks.

Another landmark decision saw Ryan’s family win a civil case against Kobe Murray, who is now known as Kareem Gayle, after he filed a lawsuit claiming the 24-year-old was unlawfully killed.

A judge at Liverpool Civil and Family Court agreed and awarded almost £10,000 in damages, and also ruled the defendant had to pay over £12,000 in legal costs.

The family recently contacted the High Court asking the bailiffs to collect damages.

The family also recently took an important step in their attempt to provide greater support to victims in serious crime cases where an acquittal is reached.

After submitting their demands to a minister following an intervention by Stourbridge MP Suzanne Webb, who supports their campaign, they met Prime Minister Boris Johnson to discuss the campaign.