Essex

Police have 'new information' in Barrymore pool death probe

Stuart Lubbock Image copyright Other
Image caption Stuart Lubbock was found dead in Michael Barrymore's swimming pool in March 2001

Detectives investigating the death of a man whose body was found in entertainer Michael Barrymore's pool say they have new information about the case after a renewed appeal last week.

Stuart Lubbock, 31, was found dead at Barrymore's home in Roydon, Essex, on 31 March 2001, having suffered serious sexual injuries.

Police offered a £20,000 reward for information leading to a conviction.

They are now following up several calls, as the Mirror reported.

As they relaunched the appeal, Det Ch Insp Stephen Jennings said: "I believe that [Stuart] was raped and murdered that night.

"One or more of those party-goers are responsible for that serious sexual assault on Stuart Lubbock."

The new senior investigating officer said three people previously arrested, including Barrymore, had not been "completely eliminated".

In a Channel 4 documentary about the case, he admitted crime scene mistakes had happened at the time, with police quick to believe the death was an accident.

Image copyright Twitter
Image caption Michael Barrymore released a statement on Twitter

Barrymore read a statement on Twitter ahead of the programme saying he had been "bashed and bullied by the media" over the death in his pool.

"I've always done everything anyone has asked of me," he said. "I've co-operated with everyone.

"Essex Police's own QC has said that 'we know Mr Barrymore has had nothing to do with this and that there is no evidence linking him with the injuries to Mr Lubbock or the pool'."

"I've had nothing to do with this whatsoever and yet I keep getting bashed and bullied by the media."

Image copyright CHANNEL 4
Image caption Essex Police admitted mistakes were made in securing the crime scene at Barrymore's Roydon home

Since the reward was offered and the programme aired, an Essex Police spokesman said: "Following our renewed appeal for information about the rape and murder of Stuart Lubbock we have received a number of calls with information.

"We will follow up all lines of inquiry."

In 2007 Barrymore was arrested in connection with the death but was later released without charge and his arrest found to be unlawful.

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