York & North Yorkshire

Harrogate homeless hostel death reinvestigated eight years on

Robert Pride-McLeod Image copyright North Yorkshire Police
Image caption Robert Pride-McLeod was found dead in the cellar of a homeless hostel in Harrogate in 2007

Detectives have reopened an investigation into the death of a Harrogate man in a homeless hostel eight years ago.

Robert Pride-McLeod, 49, who weighed five stone, was found dead in a cellar at the hostel on Robert Street on 21 January 2007.

He had been made homeless nine days earlier and had heart problems.

An inquest recorded an open verdict into his death but post-mortem tests found he had suffered a head injury.

Three people were arrested during the initial investigation but were released without charge.

The force has released footage of the last time Mr Pride-McLeod, also known as Timothy, was pictured alive.

'Deserves justice'

Det Insp Mark Pearson, of North Yorkshire Police, said: "Robert died alone in a cold cellar.

"Nobody's life should end in this manner and I want to find out what happened to him.

"From the evidence obtained during the initial investigation in 2007 it is believed that Robert was assaulted after he was taken in at the hostel.

"However, despite that investigation there are still a number of unanswered questions. Who assaulted Robert? How did he come to be in the cellar? Did someone put him there?"

The building where Mr Pride-McLeod died is no longer a homeless hostel but at the time there were seven rooms and a flat which were occupied.

He had changed his name around five years before his death.

His sister, Christine, who lives in America and knows him by his previous name Timothy, said: "Timothy did not deserve to die in such sad and lonely circumstances and deserves justice."

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