Lee Cooper's family 'devastated' by Stockton death

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Lee CooperImage source, Family handout
Image caption,
Lee Cooper died in hospital after being injured in Stockton

The family of a man who was killed say they are "absolutely devastated" by his death.

Lee Cooper, 43, died in hospital after being found with injuries on Westbourne Street in Stockton on 23 December.

His family said he was "deeply loved" and their lives will "never be the same again".

Two men have been charged with murder and appeared at Newcastle Crown Court on Friday. Two other men have been released under investigation.

Luke Pearson, 18, of no fixed abode, and Neil Maxwell, 39, of Westbourne Street, did not enter pleas and were remanded in custody for another hearing at Teesside Crown Court on 23 January.

Cleveland Police said two other men aged 20 and 29, who were arrested on suspicion of conspiring to cause grievous bodily harm with intent, have been released under investigation.

In a statement released by the police, Mr Cooper's family said: "We can't even put into words how we feel, we're absolutely devastated.

"Lee was deeply loved by family and all who knew him. Our lives as a family will never be the same again."

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