The 44-year-old suspect was arrested in the early hours of this morning (Thursday) in Southall, west London, and remains in custody, police said. Thomas O’Halloran, from Greenford, near Ealing, was stabbed in broad daylight on Tuesday.
Officers at the Metropolitan Police believe the elderly victim was stabbed on Western Avenue (A40) around 4pm, before travelling 75 yards (70 metres) on his mobility scooter towards Runnymede Gardens, which runs parallel to the major road, near Cayton Road.
There he was able to flag down a member of the public, and the emergency services were called.
The Met Police said officers gave Mr O’Halloran first aid until the arrival of paramedics and London’s air ambulance.
However, the pensioner was sadly later pronounced dead at the scene.
Detective Chief Inspector Jim Eastwood, leading the murder investigation, said in a statement: “I would like to thank the public for their overwhelming support following this horrific incident.
“As a result of the release of a CCTV image yesterday, an arrest has been made and this investigation is progressing at pace.”
He added: “Mr O’Halloran’s family have been updated with this development and continue to be supported by specially trained officers.
“I would reiterate their previous request that their privacy is respected by everyone as they continue to come to terms with their tragic loss.”
The Met said that detectives from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command were leading the investigation.
Mr O’Halloran was captured on CCTV footage just moments before he was fatally stabbed.
He was believed to have been travelling back from busking outside a Tesco store in Greenford, a regular passtime of his, to raise money for Ukraine.
The elderly man was regularly seen with his accordion and harmonica, and was said to be well-known in the local community.
Yesterday (Wednesday), Chief Superintendent Sean Wilson, the Western Area commander, said Mr O’Halloran had his life “snatched away” in an act of “unprovoked violence”.
He added: “He was a very well known and much-loved member of our community.”
The CCTV footage of Mr O’Halloran was taken just 20 minutes before he was attacked. The shop camera it was taken from sits about a mile away from the site of the stabbing.
Shop worker Ronak Patel recognised the old man in the footage after seeing him going past the shop every day.
He told the Mirror: “That’s him; he went past here twice every day on his way to and from Tesco to play his accordion.”