Shop worker stabbed to death in newsagent robbery

A murder investigation is under way after a shop worker was stabbed to death during a robbery at a newsagent's in north-west London, police said.

The man is believed to have been attacked as he opened Marsh Food and Wine in Pinner on Sunday morning.

Scotland Yard said the shop's till was stolen and may have been discarded by the suspect, while detectives are appealing for witnesses who saw a black Vauxhall Astra driven away at speed immediately after the stabbing.

Officers were called to the scene in Marsh Road at around 6am but the victim was pronounced dead about 45 minutes later.

The Metropolitan Police have released no further details about the man but said inquiries were under way to identify him and inform his next of kin.

Detective Chief Inspector Simon Stancombe said: "I am appealing to anyone who was in the area around Marsh Lane this morning and saw anything of interest to contact police.

"This was a violent robbery that has escalated, resulting in the murder of a man.

"It appears the till was stolen from the shop during this robbery and this may have been discarded by the suspect. If you have come across this, we want to hear from you.

"I am particularly keen to hear from anyone who saw a black Vauxhall Astra that was driven away at speed south down Cecil Park immediately after the attack.

"We think that car was parked in Cecil Park prior to the murder – if you saw this, or have any other information that could help us progress this investigation, I would urge you to get in contact."

A large section of Marsh Road has been cordoned off and a police forensics tent erected outside Marsh Food and Wine and a Costa Coffee outlet.

Local business owner Peter Brook, 55, who lives nearby, said: "When someone actually violates your community, people will be shocked.

"I know the other traders I've spoken to are thinking 'there but for the grace of God go the rest of us'."

He said there were a few employees from the newsagent's who delivered the morning papers to local businesses, all of whom he said are "kind, polite and so committed to working in the local community".

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Police said a violent robbery had escalated, resulting in the murder of a man.
Police said a violent robbery had escalated, resulting in the murder of a man.
Police said a violent robbery had escalated, resulting in the murder of a man.
Police said a violent robbery had escalated, resulting in the murder of a man.
Pinner stabbing: Shop worker stabbed to death in ‘violent robbery’, police say
Police officers in Marsh Road, Pinner.Police officers in Marsh Road, Pinner. Photograph: David Mirzoeff/PA

Murder investigations have been launched after two stabbings over the weekend in London and Somerset.

A shop worker was stabbed to death in Pinner, north-west London, on Sunday morning during a robbery at a newsagent. The man, who has yet to be identified, is believed to have been opening up the newsagent on Marsh Road when he was attacked. Police were called at about 6am and the man was pronounced dead at 6.46am.

DCI Simon Stancombe said: “This was a violent robbery that has escalated, resulting in the murder of a man. It appears the till was stolen from the shop during this robbery and this may have been discarded by the suspect. If you have come across this, we want to hear from you.”

He also appealed for help tracing a black Vauxhall Corsa seen near the crime scene.

It was the 28th murder investigation launched by the Metropolitan police in the capital this year and the 29th in London overall, including one being investigated by the British Transport Police.

Nick Hurd, the MP for Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner, said he was “deeply saddened” by the stabbing.

One resident, Mary MacNamara, told the Press Association the government was too preoccupied with Brexit to tackle knife crime. “They should be looking at the causes ... It’s very infuriating to the people in this country,” she said.

In Wells, Somerset, police arrested eight people after a man in his 30s died on Saturday. Officers were called to a disturbance at a property on Merlin Drive at 4.25pm. They found two men with knife wounds on nearby Wookey Hole Road, one of whom died at the scene. A formal identification had yet to be carried out but his next of kin had been informed.

A police spokesperson said the injuries sustained by the other man, also in his 30s, were not life-threatening but he continued to receive treatment in hospital.

Armed officers assisted with the arrest of six men and two women, all from the Somerset area.

DI Alistair Hammett, of Avon and Somerset police’s major crime investigation team, said: “We’re carrying out a full investigation into what is clearly a very tragic incident. Specially trained officers will be providing support to the man’s family and our thoughts are with them as they come to terms with the devastating news they have been given.

“I appreciate this incident will shock local residents and we are increasing patrols in the area to provide reassurance. At this stage, we believe this to be an isolated incident involving people known to each other.”

A spate of fatal stabbings has sent the issue of knife crime rising up the political agenda in recent weeks, with debate over whether police have the resources to tackle the problem. In response, the chancellor, Philip Hammond, handed an extra £100m to police forces in England and Wales.

On Friday night, a boy, believed to be 17, was stabbed to death outside a block of flats in Isleworth, west London.

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Mr Brook, who has lived in Pinner for nearly two decades, added: "People sometimes don't appreciate the people who come out at 5am to deliver a service to the local community. When people like that are murdered going about their job it's such a tragedy."

One resident described Pinner as "lovely", but said she was not shocked by the news as such incidents are "happening in all areas".

Mary MacNamara, who has lived in the area for four years, said: "We all see what's going on generally and it (such crime) seems to be happening in all areas.

"It's happening every day. Nobody does anything about it."

She said the Government is too focused on Brexit and should be looking more closely at the causes of violent crime.

She said: "The Government are doing nothing about it. All they do is fight about Brexit.

"They should be looking at the causes. They continue to spend all their time on it (Brexit). It's very infuriating to the people in this country."

Local MP Nick Hurd said police are making house-to-house inquiries.

He tweeted: "Deeply saddened to hear of a fatal stabbing in Marsh Road #Pinner earlier this morning . Area cordoned off; police conducting house to house enquiries and reassurance patrols."

Police are asking anyone with information to call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

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