Family of Evelyn Stevens mourn 'tragic loss'

Evelyn Stevens
Image caption Evelyn Stevens' family described her as a vivacious character who loved the finer things in life

The family of an 88-year-old woman found dead outside her flat have spoken of their "sudden and tragic loss".

The body of Evelyn Stevens was found by Baltimore Court, The Drive, in Hove, shortly before 07:00 GMT on Thursday.

Her family described her as "a vibrant and vivacious character, with a love of the finer things in life".

A 49-year-old man who was arrested on suspicion of her murder has been released on bail until 19 February pending further police inquiries.

A post-mortem examination revealed the pensioner had suffered injuries consistent with a fall from height.

'Safety concerns'

In a statement, her family added: "We hope that she is now resting in peace."

Detectives said the circumstances as to how she came to her death remained under investigation.

Image caption Police activity centred on the area around Mrs Stevens' flat

They said Mrs Stevens and the arrested man were known to each other, but were not related.

The case has been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) by the force following previous contact between the woman and officers.

A statement from the force said it was "a matter of standard procedure".

Neighbours have revealed that Mrs Stevens had been concerned about her safety.

Anyone who saw or heard anything suspicious in the area of Baltimore Court before her body was discovered is asked to contact police.

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