Norwich murder probe police call for public to help piece together victim’s last hours

A police seal was put in place at the flats in Saffron Square. Pic: Dan Grimmer

A police seal was put in place at the flats in Saffron Square. Pic: Dan Grimmer - Credit: Archant

A community stunned by the murder of a man in a city flat were today urged to help police to piece together the circumstances around his death.

Police were called to Saffron Square in Catton Grove at 7am on Saturday and found the body of a man, aged in his 50s.

A Home Office post-mortem examination carried out yesterday concluded that the man, who has yet to be named, had died as a result of severe chest and facial injuries sustained from an assault. Detective Superintendent Paul Durham, from the Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team, said: 'We are in the very early stages of this inquiry and are piecing together the events leading up to his death.

'I understand how shocking this will be to the local community, particularly given how rare incidents of this nature tend to be.

'That's why I am asking for anybody with any information concerning the incident to contact the police as soon as possible.'

Last night a police seal remained in place at the flat, with officers still at the scene. On Saturday afternoon there were five forensic services vans outside the flats and neighbours reported seeing white-suited investigators emerging from the property.

One neighbour said last night: 'The first I knew about it was when one of my mates rang me up to ask if I was still alive.'

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Steve Morphew, who represents Catton Grove on Norfolk County Council, urged the community to help the police with their investigation.

He said: 'We were out canvassing in Catton Grove, in Hillmead, not far from Saffron Square and people were talking about it.

'There is anxiety in the area, so we would echo the police appeal. This is something that we need to get to the bottom of.

'If anyone has something they can tell the police, I would urge them to do so. Councillors will be out trying to reassure people.'

Norwich Policing Commander, Superintendent Lynne Cross, has also tried to reassure the local community.

She said: 'I fully understand residents will be shocked and concerned that there have been two murders in the city within a week. It is unusual to have two incidents of this nature in such a short space of time.

'I would like to reassure people that we are carrying out additional patrols in those areas where residents may have concerns and our officers would be happy to answer any questions you may have.'

The death came a week after the body of Steve Stannard, 37, was found at a home in Mile Cross - which had also prompted a murder investigation.

He was found stabbed to death shortly before 2.30pm on Saturday, November 5 in Bowers Avenue, Norwich.

Policer yesterday arrested a second man in connection with the incident.

The man, aged in his late teens, was arrested for murder at 11pm on Friday, November 11, in the Croydon area.

He was taken to Wymondham Police Investigation Centre where he was to be questioned by officers from the Joint Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team.

Searches, assisted by officers from the Met Police, which started on Saturday continued yesterday at a property in the Croydon area.

A 21-year-old man from London, who was previously arrested in connection with the murder, has been released on police bail pending further enquiries.

He is due to return to Great Yarmouth Police Investigation Centre on Tuesday, January 10 next year.

A police seal remains in place at a property in Bowers Avenue as the investigation continues.

Anyone with information which could help police with either murder investigation should contact the Major Investigation Team on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org

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