Extra police reassurance in Colchester after two stabbings

Police at the scene of the incident in Ryegate Road Picture: JAKE FOXFORD

Police at the scene of the incident in Ryegate Road Picture: JAKE FOXFORD - Credit: Archant

Police have stepped up their patrols in Colchester following two stabbings.

Officers launched a murder investigation after a man was found dead in Ryegate Road on Monday just after 8.20am.

He has since been identified as Carl Hopkins, 49, from Colchester.

The force is linking the death to another stabbing just before 9.55pm in George Street where a 40-year-old man was found with stab wounds to his back and taken to hospital with serious injuries.

Detective Superintendent Leighton Hammett said: “We understand, particularly in light of the tragic event in Colchester on Monday, that people have concerns about knife crime in Colchester.

“Tackling knife crime is a priority both in Essex and nationally. Sadly up and down the country, police forces and communities are seeing the tragic consequences of this offence.

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“Following the murder in our town on Monday, our specialist detectives are working around the clock to bring those responsible to justice.”

Det Supt Hammett said officers were providing increased patrols in the town centre to offer extra reassurance.

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“We are working with our partners to prevent and tackle incidents involving knives and other weapons,” he added.

“But this is not a crime that will be solved by policing alone and that why we’re working with our partners in the local authority and in education to raise awareness of the consequences of carrying a knife.

“Our Community Policing Team has recently been involved in a dedicated operation to educate students about knife and gang crime.

“We continue to work closely with the Only Cowards Carry charity and we have a number of knife amnesty bins in the borough to enable people to hand over their weapons safely before they can cause harm.

“We continue to carry out intelligence led patrols and operations targeting those carrying weapons.

“However we need the community’s help to tackle this issue, we need people to give us information when crimes happen, we need people to tell us if there are those carrying or using weapons in your community and we need people to continue to support us to raise awareness of the tragic consequences carrying a blade can have.”

Anyone with information about the murder investigation should call North Major Crime on 101 quoting incident 208 of 11/02 or you Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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