Northampton skeleton bush death was 'suspicious'

Adeyemi Olugbuyi Image copyright Northamptonshire Police
Image caption Police believe Adeyemi Olugbuyi was stabbed and hid in bushes where he died

A suspected drug-dealer whose skeleton was found in a bush two years after he was stabbed died in "suspicious" circumstances.

The remains of Adeyemi Olugbuyi, 32, were found by a litter picker in Northampton in January 2016.

Police believe Mr Olugbuyi, known as "Big Man" and "Babs", had been stabbed in September 2013 due to involvement in the drugs trade.

Recording an open verdict, coroner Anne Pember said the death was suspicious.

Northampton Coroner's Court heard a statement from witness Heather Cunliffe, who lived close to Mr Olugbuyi in North Holme Court.

She said she had seen three men and a woman get out of a green Nissan Micra on 13 September 2013.

'Delivering crack cocaine'

One of the men then appeared to thrust a knife into the driver. By the time she had called the police, the people had gone.

The car was later recovered and a blood stain inside matched Mr Olugbuyi's DNA.

But it was not until 26 January 2016 that his skull was found in the bushes in Billing Brook Road, not far from North Holme Court.

Det Con Donna Flemming, from Northamptonshire Police, said it was thought Mr Olugbuyi ran from his attacker and hid in the bush.

Image copyright South Beds News Agency
Image caption The body was found in Billing Brook Road in January 2016 by a litter picker

Forensic pathologist Dr Mike Briggs said the body had been "almost completely skeletonised" and he could find no evidence of a stab wound on the bones.

But an analysis of a shirt and a vest found on Mr Olugbuyi showed there was a "stab cut" in each caused by a knife.

Det Con Flemming said four people had been arrested in connection with Mr Olugbuyi's death but there was insufficient evidence to charge any of them.

She said at the time Mr Olugbuyi was stabbed, he was "delivering a crack [cocaine] deal".

Mrs Pember said although there was "clearly a prior incident", she could not return a verdict of unlawful killing because Dr Briggs could not be certain of the cause of death.

"I am unable to be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt he was unlawfully killed. But I do find his death suspicious," she added.

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