Fa­ther stabbed to death aboard train was on birth­day trip

Lee Pomeroy, 51, wanted to spend some qual­ity time with his son but was stabbed to death on a train

The Sunday Telegraph - - Front page - By Martin Evans and Yo­hannes Lowe

A FA­THER stabbed to death on a train was on his way to London to cel­e­brate his birth­day with his 14-year-old son, his fam­ily re­vealed last night.

Lee Pomeroy would have been 52 yes­ter­day, but died on Fri­day af­ter­noon when he was stabbed in the neck dur­ing a brief ar­gu­ment with a fel­low pas­sen­ger on a train in Surrey.

Mr Pomeroy, an IT con­sul­tant, who lived with his wife, Svet­lana, and teenage son in Guildford, was de­scribed as an honourable man who was al­ways will­ing to help those in trou­ble.

In a state­ment, his fam­ily said: “Lee took his son on a trip to London hop­ing to spend some qual­ity time with him, which was cut short by an hor­rific and point­less at­tack.”

The state­ment went on: “Lee would have had his birth­day to­day but did not get to see his presents. He was an hon­est, bright per­son, who loved mu­sic very much, he knew his­tory and art and he was a bach­e­lor of science in maths.

“He was a de­voted fam­ily man and did ev­ery­thing for his fam­ily. He was an honourable man and would al­ways help some­body who was in trou­ble. He was a lov­ing hus­band and fa­ther, he will be deeply missed by all his fam­ily.”

Mr Pomeroy and his Rus­sian-born wife mar­ried in Sh­effield in 2000 and lived in London be­fore mov­ing to Guildford in 2012.

Last night a fam­ily friend said Mrs Pomeroy was too up­set to com­ment, adding: “It is too fresh. It was in front of their 14-year-old son.” Neigh­bours de­scribed the cou­ple as quiet and po­lite and said Mr Pomeroy was clearly de­voted to his son. The teenager was last night be­ing sup­ported by spe­cially trained po­lice of­fi­cers and was said to be deeply trau­ma­tised.

Po­lice said that Mr Pomeroy lost his life af­ter an ar­gu­ment with an­other pas­sen­ger as they boarded a Water­loo bound train at Guildford London Road sta­tion quickly es­ca­lated into “ex­traor­di­nary vi­o­lence”.

A man­hunt was launched on Fri­day af­ter­noon af­ter the sus­pect fled the scene. Yes­ter­day a 35-year-old man was ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of mur­der at an ad­dress in Farn­ham, 15 miles from where the stab­bing took place. A 27-year-old woman was ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of as­sist­ing an of­fender.

WHEN Lee Pomeroy and his teenage son boarded the 1.01pm train from Guildford London Road to Water­loo, they were go­ing for a trip to London for some “qual­ity time” to­gether.

But by the time the train reached its next stop – only four min­utes later – the 51-year-old IT con­sul­tant lay dy­ing from a stab wound to the neck.

The fa­ther of one had ex­changed words with an­other man as they boarded the train, and al­most im­me­di­ately the ar­gu­ment es­ca­lated into ex­treme vi­o­lence.

Bri­tish Trans­port Po­lice (BTP) con­firmed that the vic­tim and his at­tacker were not known to one an­other and said the at­tack had been un­pro­voked.

The sus­pect fled the train when it pulled into Clan­don sta­tion at 1.05pm, lead­ing to a man­hunt across Surrey.

A man and woman were ar­rested early yes­ter­day morn­ing at an ad­dress in Farn­ham and were be­ing ques­tioned in con­nec­tion with the in­ci­dent.

The man was ar­rested on sus­pi­cion of mur­der while the 27-year-old woman, who was said by lo­cals to be a mother of one, was be­ing ques­tioned on sus­pi­cion of as­sist­ing an of­fender.

Neigh­bours in the same block said they had ex­pe­ri­enced prob­lems with anti-so­cial be­hav­iour from the cou­ple in the past and had re­ported the mat­ter to the po­lice.

Grant Christy, who lives in the same block, said: “At six they smashed the door down, woke me up im­me­di­ately, ob­vi­ously.

“I heard the po­lice shout­ing, ‘put your hands up, turn around’, all that sort of thing and then it went quiet.

“They led her out first with the kid, bare­foot, put her in a po­lice wagon over there, then a few min­utes later they pulled him out hand­cuffed.”

A sec­ond res­i­dent: “They have only just moved in. Just a few months ago. He wasn’t there to be­gin with, he moved in af­ter she did.”

A Surrey Po­lice spokesman said: “We at­tended that ad­dress on Nov 29. We’ve had other calls since. There is an on­go­ing dis­pute be­tween neigh­bours. It’s un­re­lated to the BTP in­ves­ti­ga­tion.”

Re­veal­ing more details about what had un­folded on the lunchtime com­muter ser­vice, BTP Asst Chief Con­sta- ble Sean O’Cal­laghan said the in­ci­dent had taken less than five min­utes and ap­peared to have erupted fol­low­ing a “ver­bal dis­cus­sion”.

He said: “That dis­cus­sion lasted three to four min­utes, it moved through one car­riage from where they first boarded into an­other car­riage, and that ar­gu­ment es­ca­lated to the un­pro­voked vi­o­lent at­tack that sadly re­sulted in the death.”

Mr Pomeroy, who would have cel­e­brated his 52nd birth­day yes­ter­day, had planned the day with his son in or­der to spend some “qual­ity time” with him, ac­cord­ing to his fam­ily. Mr Pomeroy’s wife, Svet­lana, was said to be too up­set to com­ment and that the boy was said to have been left deeply trau­ma­tised by what he had wit­nessed.

It is un­der­stood Mr Pomeroy moved away from his son as the row es­ca­lated but then his at­tacker pro­duced a knife and Mr Pomeroy re­ceived a fa­tal wound to his neck.

Af­ter his at­tacker fled at Clan­don, the train moved off be­fore the alarm could be raised, and it was only when it ar­rived at Hors­ley sta­tion four min­utes later that po­lice and am­bu­lance crews were alerted.

By the time paramedics ar­rived Mr Pomeroy had lost a huge amount of blood and suf­fered a fa­tal heart at­tack.

A fe­male pas­sen­ger, who asked not to be named, said: “There was a lot of blood ev­ery­where in the car­riage. I don’t think the poor chap stood a chance. The po­lice who were here first started to give him CPR but it was ap­par­ently too late to save him and he died while the train was in the sta­tion.”

Of­fi­cers from Surrey Po­lice joined their col­leagues from Bri­tish Trans­port Po­lice as a huge search was mounted for the killer.

The hunt was ini­tially con­cen­trated on the fields and lanes around Clan­don af­ter sev­eral vil­lagers re­ported see­ing a sus­pi­cious-look­ing man wan­der­ing around.

He­li­copters car­ry­ing heat seek­ing cam­eras and spe­cially trained snif­fer dogs join­ing in the search, but as dark­ness fell the sus­pect re­mained at large.

Lo­cals were warned not to ap­proach the sus­pect, who was de­scribed as a black man, around 6ft tall, with a bald head and beard wear­ing a black track­suit and white train­ers.

The search con­tin­ued through­out the night but it was scaled back at around 6am yes­ter­day when po­lice an­nounced they had made two ar­rests in Farn­ham, around 15 miles away from where the stab­bing took place.

The sus­pects con­tin­ued to be ques­tioned last night.

‘We at­tended that ad­dress on Nov 29. We’ve had other calls since. There is a dis­pute be­tween neigh­bours’

‘There was a lot of blood ev­ery­where in the car­riage. I don’t think the poor chap stood a chance’

Lee Pomeroy, who would have been 52 yes­ter­day, was tak­ing his 14-year-old son to London to cel­e­brate when he was knifed to death

Flow­ers left at Hors­ley sta­tion in trib­ute to Lee Pomeroy, right

Left, po­lice search prop­erty in Will­bury Road, Farn­ham, where the sus­pect and a woman were ar­rested. Above Svet­lana Pomeroy, wife of Lee Pomeroy, was too up­set to com­ment on the events

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