The Daily Telegraph

Woman held on suspicion of murdering boy aged 10

Neighbours left shaken and upset as detectives investigat­e death of ‘severely disabled’ child

- By Laura Sharman

A WOMAN has been arrested following the death of a 10-year-old boy who was believed to have been severely disabled.

Police launched a murder investigat­ion yesterday after a woman in her 40s went to a west London police station and spoke to officers, before being arrested on suspicion of murder.

Officers and paramedics were seen visiting a residentia­l address in Acton, west London, where they found the body of a child.

Local residents described news of the boy’s death as “shattering”.

One neighbour, named Guy, said: “The family live in the bottom flat to the right and my friend lives above. We’d been out together the night before and then he text me at 2.49am. I think he was alerted to it when police arrived shortly after.

“I didn’t see a thing, I was asleep, but he rang my doorbell at 9am and said ‘are you OK?’

“The child was wheelchair-bound, quite severely. He couldn’t really speak and spent a lot of time just yelling.”

Officers believe they know the identity of the boy but are awaiting formal identifica­tion. The next of kin has been informed.

Detectives began door-to-door inquiries yesterday, while forensic officers searched inside the property, which is part of a large, detached house converted into flats.

Neighbours said they were “shaken” and “terribly upset” after they were woken by the sirens of two ambulances and a number of police cars arriving in the early hours of this morning.

A neighbour said: “I don’t know the name of the child. The child was screaming all the time. I wish I could have done more to help.”

The Rev Nick Jones, the rector of Acton and a neighbour, said: “I think it’s shattering. I’m shaking a bit and it’s hugely upsetting. The people who live there and the people involved are in my thoughts and prayers.

“My bedroom is at the front so I was woken by the sirens at about 3am.

“There were lots of police vehicles. I saw people moving around and officers moving around, but it was all very difficult to see what was happening. They were just figures in the dark.

“We are all only finding out now and we are all in shock. It’s very sad.”

He added: “I’ll do my best to support people and hopefully people will rally around and support each other.”

Another resident, a 74-year-old man named Waldek, said: “A gentleman came around saying he was a police officer, simply asking if I had heard anything.

“He just said that a child had died

‘I think it’s shattering. I’m shaking a bit and it’s hugely upsetting. The people involved are in my prayers’

and a lady had been arrested. I can’t say that I ever saw them out and about.”

One family were in tears this morning after hearing about the death of the boy. The resident, who lives nearby but did not wish to be named, said: “It is horrific. We were in tears this morning. It is very upsetting.”

Abdul Abdulle, 34, who lives further along the street, said: “I was coming home at 2.30am from a night out. I just saw flashing lights and a lot of police and paramedics everywhere.

“I saw lots of police cars and officers going in the house and the ambulance door was left open.

“I knew something violent would have happened but I didn’t realise it was a murder and a child, too.”

A Metropolit­an Police spokesman said: “The woman, aged in her 40s, has been arrested on suspicion of murder.

“She was known to the child. Nobody else is sought at this stage in connection with the death.

“Detectives from Specialist Crime are investigat­ing.”

A post mortem examinatio­n would be arranged “in due course”.

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