Friday, 16 April 2010


In an exclusive interview with RWD, Donatella Panayiotou, talks about the shooting that took place at Grime Daily’s private party last weekend and the controversial tabloid coverage that’s since followed…

Police are still appealing for revelers to come forward with photo’s taken at the Grime Daily event in Colindale, on Saturday night, which resulted in three people being injured in a shooting. Three men were arrested in a car in NW9 following the incident and a 22 year-old man, a 24 year-old man and a 24 year-old man all have since been released on police bail pending further enquiries.

DI Michael Millar, MPS Trident said: “It was pure luck that no one was killed during this incident. The gunman fired an automatic weapon into the crowd; hitting three people. He is obviously an extremely dangerous individual who had complete disregard to the safety of anyone else at the event.”

“The event was well attended and we know that numerous people were taking photographs either with cameras or on their phones. These pictures could prove vital in investigating this crime and I’m appealing for anyone who has images from the event to contact the incident room.”

While thankfully none of the victims are in a life threatening condition, it’s been hard to avoid the controversy that’s ensued since Grime Daily presenter, Donatella Panayiotou, whose father owns the warehouse in which the crime took place, appeared in a typically sensational article in every builder’s favourite read, The Sun.

But anyone who knows how the tabloid world works will tell you it’s not always a clear-cut case of someone selling their story.

“I ignored the newspapers initially as this isn’t – and never was – about me,” Donatella explains to RWD. “It should be about the victims and looking at how this happened and can be prevented from happening again… When I saw the paper I was fuming – I contacted The Sun to try and set them straight but in no way did I sell my story. In the brief conversation I had with Anthony France (the journalist who ran the story) I said I’d been receiving threats as a result and wanted their account rectified as I clearly wasn’t the target of what took place.”

Unfortunately for Donatella the story that followed in today’s paper did little to exacerbate the escalating criticism, yet again making her appear to be the victim, over exaggerating passing statements she’d made about feeling threatened. While she acknowledges her naivety as to the workings of the press, she’s since turned down numerous offers to share her ‘story’.

But Donatella’s real story – one which is bound to disappoint a number of grime fans – has little to do with a backfiring PR machine and more to do with Grime Daily itself.

“I’d like to officially announce my resignation from Grime Daily. I will no longer be presenting, supporting or associated with the brand or website,” say’s the 26 year-old model and presenter.

“Yes, I did give permission for them to use the warehouse but it wasn’t my party and subsequently had nothing to do with me. Posty (the co-founder of Grime Daily) recruited Face4Music to come on board and my dealings with it ended there.”

While there were clearly failings from the promoters in ensuring effective searches were carried out, something Donatella herself agrees with, she – and many others involved – have been dumbstruck at the lack of ownership taken over proceedings by the promoters.

“What I couldn’t believe that while, yes, I was scared and shaken up by what happened, everyone else, all the event organisers, disappeared on the night with no word… I’ve no choice but to leave Grime Daily as a result of their handling of the situation. I don’t endorse the statement they put out on their website either, in fact I think it’s inconsiderate and a feeble attempt to sweep the real failings under the carpet. Grime music wasn’t played but you’d have to be pretty loose-minded to blame a genre of music on an incident like this anyway. There’s always someone, somewhere who’ll ruin it for everyone else and I hate the fact that it happened full stop, let alone at something that I was a part of. My best wishes go out to the people injured, here’s wishing them all a speedy recovery. I will continue to be a part of this industry and do what I’ve always wanted to do – support uk music

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