Beds, Herts & Bucks

Taxi passenger sought in Mark Austin murder inquiry

Mark Austin
Image caption Mark Austin died the day after being seriously injured in an assault

A taxi passenger in Aylesbury could be a vital witness to an assault, after which a man died, police said.

Mark Austin, 53, of Coxhill Way, was seriously injured during an altercation at Harcourt Green shortly before 01:00 GMT on Thursday.

He died on Friday in Stoke Mandeville Hospital.

Detectives believe someone in a Volkswagen Passat which left the area between 23:00 GMT on Wednesday and 01:00 GMT on Thursday could help them.

Thames Valley Police said the dark coloured private hire car, which may have had the appearance of a normal car, could have then made a drop off in the early hours of Thursday.

Det Ch Insp Kevin Brown said: "We believe this vehicle may have dropped someone off in the Arundel Green area, possibly between 00:15 and 01:20 GMT, so would appeal to anyone in that area who saw this vehicle or the person getting out of it to come forward."

'Big heart'

Officers also want to trace Mr Austin's movements either on the day of the incident or the days leading up to it.

He is described as white, 5ft 11 ins (1.8m), of slim build, with short dark hair with grey flecks.

Mr Austin's family thanked hospital staff who "fought relentlessly" to save him and paid tribute to a "brother, son, uncle and father".

"Marky was partial to a few drinkies, but he was a kind man with a big heart and never had a bad word to say about anyone," a statement read.

Police said a man, 49, arrested shortly after the incident on suspicion of GBH remains sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

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