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Murder inquiry victim strangled

PUBLISHED: 13:50 07 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:29 03 March 2010

THE shadow of tragedy is hanging over Felixstowe's West End area as murder squad police revealed that a man found dead had died from strangulation.

Mystery still surrounds the circumstances of the sudden and suspicious death of the 36-year-old man in a flat close to the seafront.

THE shadow of tragedy is hanging over Felixstowe's West End area as murder squad police revealed that a man found dead had died from strangulation.

Mystery still surrounds the circumstances of the sudden and suspicious death of the 36-year-old man in a flat close to the seafront.

A 45-year-old woman is still being questioned by police after being arrested on suspicion of murder. Following the discovery of the victim's body officers spent all night at the scene at Dinsdale Court, Undercliff Road West, gathering evidence.

The complex of 33 flats are just 200 yards from where last week teenagers Rob Giles – whose funeral is being held today – and Will Stokes were killed in an horrific blaze in their top-floor flat.

Although the two incidents were totally different in nature and not related at all, the effects of the tragedies has hit the community hard.

The loss of three people in the same area in such a short time is difficult to come to terms with for many of the residents, who today were left asking: "What next?"

Newsagent Pauline Sfendilis , who runs E and P News in Manning Road, said: "It is just awful. A terrible thing to happen.

"Lots of people have been coming in and saying how dreadful for two such awful things to happen so quickly and have been saying, What on earth will happen next?

"We all just feel so sorry for all those involved."

A woman in Holland Road said this morning: "It's just too much to take in. A neighbour told me last night and I could not believe it. Why is this happening?"

Police spent all night at the first-floor flat in Dinsdale Court, ensuring the area – currently a scene of crime – was sealed off and not tampered with at all.

They were called to the flat by a member of the public shortly after 10am yesterday following a report of a body being discovered.

A woman was arrested soon afterwards and is being held in custody at Ipswich Police Station. She is due to be quizzed further by officers in the case – led by DCI David Cole – today.

Officers are also applying for an extension to the time in which she is permitted to be held for questioning.

A police spokesman said a post mortem had been held and the cause of the man's death was strangulation.

His name has not been released at this stage and may not be until later today or even tomorrow. Officers are tracing next of kin.

No details have been released either of the woman in custody, except that she was arrested in the vicinity of Undercliff Road West.

Dinsdale Court contains several blocks of both four and three storey flats, most of the them set back from the road.

Today police had removed the blue and white tape cordons around the main buildings off the several buildings within the complex but were still guarding the flat inside.

Scenes of crime officers, wearing protective white clothing, carried out forensic tests during much of the day. One of these took photographs from the front of Dinsdale Court, while another filmed the area with a video camera.

Caretaker Michael Turner said the flats were owned by Orbit Housing Association. He said the police had been present all night but did not know the circumstances of the tragedy.

Neighbours living in the complex spoke of their shock but said they knew little of the man and woman.

One said: "You can live in these flats for years and not know the person next door to you – it's like battery hens.

"People come and they go quite often, too. I didn't know the names of these people and they just seemed very quiet."

Resident Lilly Williamson said she had seen the man walking across the road to the nearby shops on occasions but added she did not know him to talk to.

"I saw the police turn up and the caretaker told me that the man had died. The police took someone away later on. It's a really quiet area and I can't believe something like this has happened," she said.

John Greenaway, who works in an off licence opposite the flats, said several of the residents popped into the shops and he did not know who the man was.

"There are a lot of young single mothers and I have seen foreign nationals living there. But the people seem to come and go quite a lot and don't live there for very long at all," he said.

Dinsdale Court was built in the 1960s and stands between Undercliff Road West and Bulls Cliff and the people who live are of a variety of ages.

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