Hither Green standoff continues as tributes to intruder removed again

Apr 12, 2018, 00:08
Hither Green standoff continues as tributes to intruder removed again

Police - with officers on horseback - are continuing to patrol part of London where a burglar was stabbed to death amid tensions over tributes to him.

Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, fatally stabbed Henry Vincent who with an accomplice broke into the Hither Green house he shared with his disabled wife, Maureen, 76.

Mr Osborn-Brooks was arrested on suspicion of murder and released on bail, but was told on Friday that no action would be taken.

On Tuesday night a hooded man, who said he came from Hammersmith, West London, was filmed walking off with flowers.

Mr Osborn-Brooks and his family have not returned to their house since the burglary and their windows have now been boarded up for fear of reprisals.

"It is a good success and it's a great reflection of the professionalism of the gardai who are here and who are actively out and about engaging in patrols", said Superintendent Derek Smart.

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"Where can I put them?"

Detective Chief Inspector Simon Harding of the Metropolitan Police told the court: "The facts are that on Wednesday April 4, two males including Henry Vincent entered a residential address at about 12.40am whilst committing a burglary".

Local resident Iain Gordon, who said he was from the Fair Society group, pulled down the flowers saying: "If you don't know why I pulled the flowers down then you aren't a human being".

The family, who have identified themselves as Gypsies, said they were being treated differently due to their backgrounds and said they wanted to remember Vincent as a brother, son and friend and "a good man".

Vincent, 37, had served several jail terms for crimes including fraud and burglary.

When asked what he was going to do with the flowers, the man replied: "I'm just going to dump them somewhere".

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While supporters of Osborn-Brooks however have labeled the tribute an "insult" the pensioner, other relatives of Vincent have vowed to remove the tributes if they are respected.

The Met said it was "maintaining a police presence".

"He wasn't a murderer, he wasn't a rapist, they're putting (sic) him as a monster", she added.

It comes after Scotland Yard issued an appeal for Billy Jeeves, who is wanted in connection with the burglary.

"The van was found burnt out and destroyed on the evening of Saturday, 7 April in Star Lane, near Hockingdon Lane in Orpington, Kent".

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