Police granted more time to question men arrested over murder of man in Thetford

PUBLISHED: 19:10 05 October 2019 | UPDATED: 19:10 05 October 2019

Police at the scene where a man is believed to have been stabbed at Brandon Road in Thetford. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Police at the scene where a man is believed to have been stabbed at Brandon Road in Thetford. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Copyright: Archant 2019

Police have been granted more time to question three men arrested in connection with the murder of a man in Thetford.

Police at the scene where a man is believed to have been stabbed at Brandon Road in Thetford. Picture: DENISE BRADLEYPolice at the scene where a man is believed to have been stabbed at Brandon Road in Thetford. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Members of the public battled to try and save the life of a man, understood to be 25-year-old David Lawal, on the side of the A134 Brandon Road shortly after 7pm on Thursday (October 3).

Officers who were on patrol in the area discovered members of the public providing first aid to the man who was later pronounced dead just before 8pm.

Police have since launched a murder investigation and made four arrests.

This evening a Norfolk Police spokesman said they have have been granted a further 36 hours to question three men who were arrested in connection with the incident.

Another man who was arrested in connection with the incident has been released under investigation whilst enquiries continue.

The investigation undertaken to establish the exact circumstances leading up to the man's death is ongoing and that, coupled with a Home Office post mortem examination which took place on Saturday (October 5) morning, have led detectives in the Joint Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team to treat his death as murder.

Cordons remained in place in the Brandon Road and Canon's Close estate area following the incident but were removed late yesterday evening (Friday, October 4).

Pending formal coroner's inquest proceedings, police have provisionally identified the deceased as Mr Lawal.

Officers still believe this to be an isolated incident with the suspects and victim known to each other.

Althouh the police cordons have now been lifted and dog walkers and members of the public are again able to walk over across the meadow which had been sealed off, there is still much shock and sadness in the community at what happened,

A woman living on Brandon Road who is nearly 50, but wanted to remain anonymous, said she was "Just extremely sad" and "couldn't believe it".

She said: "Someone has lost a son and he's not going to come home which is extremely sad.

"You don't think it could happen in areas like this - we've got a lovely meadow over there to walk on and a children's play area. It's very, very sad."

The woman said she had been in when all the drama unfolded.

She said she could see two cars, one of which is still there, and people looking at something on the ground which she thought was "a dog that had been hit".

She said: "I heard a lot of sirens.

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"The next thing I knew they were doing CPR on a person.

"The police then turned up and the air ambulance arrived.

"Lots more police came and sniffer dogs came.

"It was just like a scene from a film."

Meanwhile a 71-year-old woman from Castleford Close, off Brandon Road, said: "I saw flashing lights and went down to have a look.

"I just wanted to see what had happened. There's been accidents and things like that there before. There was quite a gathering of people down there by then.

"Flashing lights and people coming down asking about what had happened.

"It's a shock. You think the person who is dead was someone's son or brother and how awful it must be for them."

In fact, the death has shocked many people living in the community, prompting some to reach out to the family of the victim.

Brenda Canham, mayor of Thetford, said her thoughts were with the family of the man who had died.

Mrs Canham, who is a town councillor for Priory ward, which covers Brandon Road, said: "I just feel for the family.

"It's happening all over the country (knife crime) and now it happens here.

"We don't really know what happened at the moment, but all I can say is we feel sorry for the family who have to cope with this now.

"My thoughts are with them."

Other people in the area have spoken of their sadness and shock at what happened.

Police have said they are dedicating "considerable resources" to the investigation as they revealed they had launched a murder probe.

They have set up an online information portal as part of the investigation.

Anyone with information should call police on 101.

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