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Two arrested in murder probe after man's body found in flats

Original source (on modern site) | Article images: [1]

A murder probe has been launched after the body of a man was found at an address in a block of flats.

A fleet of police and ambulance crews were called to high-rise apartment building Kennedy Gardens, just off Kingsway, in Billingham, after reports that a person was injured at a private address. The North East Ambulance Service received the call at 6.17am on Thursday, May 25 - with nearby residents recalling six to seven police vehicles and four ambulances descending to the flats around 7am.

Crime scene investigators wearing white suits and blue gloves appeared to be focusing activity on a property at the rear of the flats, with a police officer standing on guard a few metres away from a back door. Cleveland Police later confirmed that a murder enquiry is underway.

Police said they were called to the flat at Kennedy Gardens at around 6.40am, where a man aged in his 50s was found deceased. The force added that his next of kin have been informed and they have been offered specialist support.

Two men, 56 and 44, have been arrested on suspicion of murder. They are in custody awaiting questioning and Cleveland Police has reassured the local community that there is not believed to be any risk to the wider public.

A huge number of police vehicles were parked on Kingsway (Image: Teesside Live)

Officers remain at various locations across the town conducting enquiries and anyone with information or concerns is urged to speak to them in confidence.

Teesside Live visited the scene at 11am on Thursday morning, where four police vans, one crime scene investigation van, and one police car were all parked near the block of flats.

One couple, who have lived in Billingham for 12 years, were walking their two dogs when they came across the huge police presence on Thursday morning. They said it was "definitely a shock" to see such a large amount of police vehicles on the usually quiet street.

The pair, who said the area is "generally not too bad" and that it has got both good and bad spots, added: "We saw police on the side and I thought - something big is going on."

One woman, who was born in Billingham but now lives in Newcastle, was visiting the area and stumbled upon the scene when walking back from a shopping trip. "I have never seen that many - ever. Normally when you see that many the incident is visible but it's not," she said, adding that it was a "bit of a shock."

Another passer-by agreed - saying it was "scary to see so many police."

A North East Ambulance Service spokesperson said: "We were called at 6.17am to reports of a person injured at a private address on Kennedy Gardens, Billingham. We sent one clinical team leader, one specialist paramedic, and two emergency ambulances."

A spokesperson for Cleveland Police added: "We would also appeal for anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious within the flats at Kennedy Gardens from yesterday evening into today to contact Cleveland Police via the 101 number. Please quote ref 100246.

"You can also submit information via this link: Public Portal (https://orlo.uk/8R190). If you don't want to speak to police, information can be passed anonymously to https://orlo.uk/le2O0 or by phoning 0800 555 111.

"Our thoughts are with the man's family at this very difficult time."

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