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"Blade was just flashed around at at school" PAL'S TERROR.

ONE of tragic Damilola's best pals revealed how he saw a youth brandishing a flick knife near the school playground just days before the killing.

And nine-year-old Karem Goldberg said the alarming incident was "nothing unusual" for the Peckham estate.

His primary-school innocence clearly destroyed by the hell around him, he went on: "You could see the blade shining in the light. He just stood there, and I was so scared.

"A lot of kids round here carry knives. It's just that sort of place. I'm frightened now my pal has been killed. I daren't go round on my own any more."

Beatings in the school playground are a depressing and terrifying way of life.

Karem's mother was devastated when one afternoon he came home in tears with blood pouring from a gaping head wound.

Still nervous and shaken by the memory the boy said: "I was in the playground when the boy came up and threw a stick at me.

"It was big and hurt because it hit me right in the face. The boy is a bully and we are scared of him. But there are a lot like him and we just try to avoid them.

"Now I don't know what I will do. My friend has died and I am frightened that I will be attacked too. Many of my pals feel the same."

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BULLIED: Pal Karem
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Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Dec 3, 2000
Words:233
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