Essex

James Attfield Colchester murder probe 'remains a priority'

James Attfield Image copyright BBC CRIMEWATCH
Image caption James Attfield, a father-of-five, died when he was stabbed 102 times near a Colchester park last March

Police say an investigation into the murder of a man stabbed 102 times remains a priority and they have no plans to scale it back.

The body of James Attfield, 33, was found in Castle Park, Colchester, on 29 March 2014.

More than 100,000 hours of police time and 10 arrests have so far led to no charges, Essex Police said.

Det Ch Supt Steve Worron said it remained a "priority investigation" and re-appealed for information.

Mr Attfield, who had a severe brain injury after being hit by a car in 2010, was found dead in the early hours of Saturday, 29 March, after last being seen at the town's River Lodge pub on the Friday night.

Image caption Det Ch Supt Steve Warren said there was "no date we intend to close the investigation by"

A year on, officers said they were treating the death as murder, but had yet to uncover a motive or find a weapon.

About 140 knives have either been recovered by police or handed in by the public, but all have been eliminated from the investigation.


Suspects released from police bail:

  • men aged 19, 27, 31 and 57 from Colchester
  • a woman aged 27 from Colchester
  • a woman aged 25 from Southend
  • a woman aged 23 from Ipswich
  • men aged 18, 33 and 33 of no fixed address

Police said 850 witnesses had also been spoken to, but they hope more people will talk to officers during a campaign in the town over the weekend.

Mr Worron said he had not identified any mistakes made in the investigation, adding: "It's incredibly unusual for an incident of this type to still be investigated a year later, but that's because we have an absolute determination to do the right thing by James, his family and the wider community."

Image copyright BBC CRIMEWATCH
Image caption Mr Attfield's mother Julie Finch urged anyone with information about her son's murder to come forward

Appealing for information, Mr Attfield's mother Julie Finch said: "I am very confident that someone will eventually [be brought to justice]. Any secret, it always comes out in the end. Somebody knows something."

The deadline for a £10,000 reward for information securing a successful conviction has been extended for a further three months.

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