Essex

Colchester triple murder inquiry: Man in court on murder charge

Wellesley Road in Colchester
Image caption Police were called to Wellesley Road in Colchester at about 22:15 BST on Saturday night

A man has appeared in court charged with murder after the bodies of three men were found in a town.

Tom Saunders, 32 of Bounstead Road, Colchester, was arrested on Sunday, after two bodies were found in a house in Wellesley Road and a third in a car in Hospital Road in the Essex town.

Police said the incident, late on Saturday evening, has left the community "shocked and saddened".

He appeared at Colchester Magistrates' Court.

The two men found inside the house have been named by the police as Danny Gibson, 35 and Jason Gibson, 31, both from Colchester.

The third body, discovered in a car has been identified as Richard Booth, 35, also from the town.

Post-mortem examinations found all men died from multiple stab wounds.

The defendant, who appeared in a grey prison-issue tracksuit with his right hand in a bandage, spoke only to confirm his name and date of birth.

He stood with his arms folded beside two dock officers as the three murder charges were read to him.

He is also charged with possession of an offensive weapon.

He was remanded in custody to appear at Chelmsford Crown Court on Wednesday.

Investigations continue and a cordon remains in place, police said.

Ch Insp Rob Huddleston said: "This incident has left our community shocked and saddened."

It is being treated as "a targeted and isolated incident", and the men were "known well known to each other" and he does not believe it was linked to any gang-related crime or drug use, he said.

"Colchester is a safe place to live, work and socialise" he added.

Extra patrols are being carried out in the area and the force is urging anyone with any information to come forward.

Image caption A police cordon remains in place in Wellesley Road, police said

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