THE victim of a fatal stabbing was enjoying a barbeque for his daughter’s birthday when he was attacked in an "Alcatraz" estate.

Police are continuing to investigate the fatal attack on a man in his 30s in Laindon on Sunday night.

The victim has been named locally as James Gibbons.

It is thought he went outside to help a neighbour in Iris Mews who had told youths to be quiet when he was stabbed to death.

Flowers paying tribute to the man, who known as ‘Gibbo’, have been left outside a property where locals say the tragedy unfolded.

It is thought the victim was a father of several children.

The emotional tributes state: “Gibbo, you really was one in a million. I can’t believe you are gone I will cherish the memories… you have been taken from us far too soon, but may you rest in eternal peace.

“Love ya Gibbo.”

Another states: “Where to start m8, so wounded I won’t get to share another laugh with you.

“U really were one of the kindest + most lovely persons I’ve ever met.

“U will be sadly missed but forever in our hearts + minds.

“Going to miss you so much on our nights out.”

Locals have been shocked by the killing and say a gang of youths had been roaming the estate drinking in the lead up to the tragedy.

One man who did not want to be named said: “A man came out and told youths to be quiet and someone came out to back him up and he was the one who got killed.

“I heard he was having a BBQ for his daughter’s birthday, it is awful.”

Another local Michaela Hales, 38, was left shocked by the killing.

The mum of five said: “I can’t believe how young the kids are, we are thinking of moving out and renting privately now.

“You don’t want this on your doorstep, I can’t live here now.

“This kids are 13 and 14 year’s old it is just shocking.”

The killing unfolded on the estate in Laindon, which is known as Alcatraz, a famous American prison - due to its fortress-like appearance.

Det Chief Supt Stephen Jennings said: “We are really keen to hear from anyone who was in the area at the time and may have seen or heard anything happen in Iris Mews shortly before 9.30pm on Sunday.

“We are also keen to hear from anyone who has seen any discarded weapons in the area.

“If anyone knows anything about this murder and has not yet come forward to speak to us, please do.

“A family has been broken apart, and we need to get to the bottom of what happened.”

Four teenagers were arrested on the night, with another picked up on Monday.

Essex Police have since confirmed the five suspects are three boys and two girls.

Three of the suspects have been released on bail until May 25 and 28.

Anyone who can help should submit a report online at or use the ‘Live Chat’ button to speak to an online operator.

You can also call 101 and cite incident 1292 of May 2.

Information can be given to charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111 or