Man charged with murders of three men in Exeter

Bonhay Road
Image caption A forensic tent remains outside the property where Anthony Payne was found dead on Monday

A man has been charged with the murders of three elderly men found dead in Exeter.

Alexander Lewis-Ranwell, 27, from Croyde, Braunton, is charged with the murders of Anthony Payne, 80, and 84-year-old twin brothers, Richard and Roger Carter.

He has also been charged with two offences of causing grievous bodily harm with intent.

Mr Lewis-Ranwell will appear at Exeter Magistrates' Court on Saturday.

Image caption The body of Anthony Payne - known as Tony - was found at his house in Bonhay Road on Monday

Mr Payne was found dead at his Bonhay Road house on Monday.

The Carter brothers were found dead in Cowick Lane about 1.5 miles (2.4km) away the following day.

Mr Lewis-Ranwell was first arrested that evening. He remains in custody.

A friend of Mr Payne - who was known as Tony - earlier described him as a "decent, ordinary 80-year-old bloke".

Keith Baker, 68, said Mr Payne had worked on a farm after leaving school, before doing National Service in the Army, and later building work.

He said his friend was an Exeter City fan who enjoyed maintaining his allotment and looking after his pet cats.

Image caption The crime scenes are being guarded by police as tributes are left outside

A friend of one of the twin brothers who were murdered said he "wouldn't have done anything to harm anybody".

Martyn Liddon, who runs Exeter-based charity Men in Sheds, said he became friends with Dick Carter when talking to him on the bus.

Supt Matt Lawler, of Devon and Cornwall Police, thanked local communities for their messages of support, adding: "All of our thoughts remain with the family and friends of the victims."

He said officers from the force would be speaking to residents and conducting investigative work at the two addresses in the city over the coming days.

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