A 78-year-old pensioner who was arrested on suspicion of murdering a suspected burglar has been released on bail.
The pensioner, named locally as Richard Osborn-Brooks found two intruders inside his house at South Park Crescent in southeast London at approximately 12:45am.
One of the intruders was armed with a screwdriver, causing a struggle with Osborn-Brooks in his kitchen, in which the suspect was subsequently stabbed. Though he was taken to hospital, the suspect died from his wounds, according to the Metropolitan police. The suspect has been named as Henry Vincent, 37.
Osborn-Brooks was arrested on suspicion of murder and taken in custody at a south London police station. He has since been released on bail until May pending further inquiries.
A witness saw Vincent’s accomplice drag his body towards a van, but gave up, leaving him for dead and fleeing the scene. He still remains at large.
The news caused an uproar on social media earlier this week, with many users expressing dismay that the police arrested a pensioner for murder. Many asked for the police to release Osborn-Brooks immediately.
Two men break into a 78-year-old’s home in crime-ridden London. One, armed with a screwdriver, herds the pensioner into his kitchen. A struggle breaks out; the burglar is stabbed and later dies. Naturally the cops arrest the old man for murder. 🤦🏻♂️https://t.co/LXXRia0JwX
78 year old man gets arrested for defending his house and life. Suspicion of murder? He’s a suspected of being a hero more like. If he gets done for that this country really is in a snowflake PC mess, especially if scum has more rights then our grandparents. Well done old fella.
America. A 78 year old Brit, attacked in his home at night by 2 young men & threatened with screwdriver. He fought back & killed one. (Hero) British Police response: arrest the elderly pensioner, hold in cell on suspicion of murder. Do not let yourself fall as we have fallen
The 78 year old didn’t go looking for trouble. The burglar took a risk and lost. Every person has a right to defend their castle. End of. #HitherGreen
(Breaking News) Police in London arrest 78 year old😕😕😕 London homeowner after stabbing burglar who later died well done that man 👏👏👏👏 release him immediately.
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Incredibly, many people say police were right to arrest the 78-year-old who killed a home invader to check he used “reasonable force”, because burglars “shouldn’t get a death sentence”. You can’t know an armed stranger in your home will stop at robbing you, as many cases prove:
Local residents of the Hither Green neighborhood have also banded behind Osborn-Brooks. Adam Lake, who lives near the street, told the BBC that he wasn’t surprised to hear about the break-in due to a recent spike of burglaries in the area. Lake said:
“We’ve even had to put up CCTV at home because we didn’t feel safe. I feel terrible for the man that was burgled. He doesn’t deserve to be punished for defending himself.”
Another neighbor of Osborn-Brooks has given her anonymous support, saying that:
“[I’ve heard] he’s a carer – this is a pensioner that has worked all his life who wants to live and die quietly.”
CPS says if you have acted in reasonable self-defense and not reacted in “over-the-top” action or calculated revenge then you are protected under the law. If the intruder dies, you still will have acted lawfully.
feature image: Richard Osborn-Brooks, left, and Henry Vincent, via the Telegraph
Alizee covers campus news and U.K. politics for DANGEROUS.
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