Sudbury: People tell of shock after man found dead in River Stour

PEOPLE spoke of their shock yesterday at the death of a man found in the river at Sudbury described as “hard working” and a “good person”.

Lee Hill was found in the water on Friday evening after being missing for five days. His body was discovered just a few yards from where he lived in Ballingdon Street.

Police had put out an appeal exactly a week ago for the 36-year-old who was last seen leaving an address in the town’s Constable Road on his white mountain bike.

Police made enquiries and searches were carried out in the town near to the river. His mobile phone and tobacco tin were found near to the river and Suffolk Lowland Search and Rescue team, together with the police helicopter were used to search the area.

Leaflets were handed out around shops and pubs and enquiries made in Essex where it was believed he has contacts.

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Two men were believed to have fist discovered Mr Hill in the river on Friday after Ross Gilfillan and his wife Lisa came across the gruesome scene close to the Ballingdon Bridge.

They had taken their dog Reuben for a walk from their home, just across the road from where Mr Hill was living in the Genesis Housing Association supported housing unit.

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“We saw these two men by the side of the river and realised what they had found. The man in water appeared to be standing up and just a couple of inches of his head was visible,” said Mr Gilfillan.

“They were unsure what to do so I advised them to call police who arrived on the scene.”

A man who lived in the same homeless unit as Mr Hill said he was “really shocked” at his death.

“I couldn’t sleep when I found out,” he said. “I only knew him for a few weeks but he was a good person and was someone who you could have a laugh with.”

Meanwhile, a man walking alongside the river yesterday said he knew of Mr Hill as being a “hard worker” and was believed to have been an employee at D&K car wash and valeting service on the Woodhall Business Park, near B&Q.

Police said that formal identification of the body found in the river had now been made and that a post mortem examination will take place in due course but the death is not being treated as suspicious and the coroner has been informed.

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