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Shocked residents left ‘terrified’ as forensic team begins murder investigation in Rainham street

PUBLISHED: 14:30 03 October 2017 | UPDATED: 14:33 03 October 2017

Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham

Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham

Archant

“Terrified” residents of a residential Rainham road have expressed their shock upon learning that a murder investigation was underway in one of the street’s first floor flats.

Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham

Earlier today, detectives from the Met’s Homicide and Major Crime Command confirmed they were treating the discovery of a dead body in a maisonette in Hood Road on Monday morning as a murder investigation.

A 46-year-old man – who police believe knew the victim – was arrested on Monday night in Hornchurch. He remains in custody at an east London police station.

The police, who have not yet revealed how the man died, cordoned off a large section of the road. Forensic teams were still at the scene at midday on Tuesday.

“It’s terrifying, there were so many police about,” one Hood Road resident told the Recorder.

Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham Police and forensic officers at the scene of a murder on Hood Road in Rainham

“I’ve lived here for years, and last night for the first time I went and locked my back door while I was just sitting in the living room.

“It’s sad that that’s the kind of world we’re living in now.”

Detectives believe they know the 51-year-old victim’s identity, but await formal identification.

A post-mortem examination will be scheduled in due course and his next of kin have not yet been informed.

Another resident, who lives a matter of yards from the murder scene, told the Recorder the block of maisonettes where the body was found has frequently been a spot for anti-social behaviour.

She said: “They don’t really have anything to do with the rest of us, but you would get strange cars coming and going at all times of the night there.

“It always seemed dodgy to me.”

Another said: “Last night there were more police than I’ve ever seen, dozens of cars up and down the road, and they were still here when I went to bed at half 11.

“At first we thought it might be terror related or something, no one had mentioned murder – the police haven’t told us anything, just kept saying they were ‘making enquiries’.

Pointing to the building opposite his house that had forensic investigators marching in and out of it at steady intervals, he added: “We’ve never had anything like this round here before – we have a few burglaries and thefts from cars every now and then, but nothing like this.”

Anyone with information that may assist police can call the incident room at Hendon on 020 8358 0300. To remain anonymous call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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