Deptford double murder: Strangled dad 'could have been dead for days'

image source, Met Police
image captionMarie Brown and Noel Brown were found dead on 4 December

A convicted sex offender might have been killed up to four days before he was found dead in his flat alongside his daughter, an inquest has heard.

Noel Brown, 69, and Marie Brown, 41, were found strangled at the property in New Butt Lane, Deptford, at 02:45 GMT last Monday.

Detectives believe Ms Brown may have disturbed attackers as they attempted to dismember her father's body.

A post-mortem examination found the pair both died of "neck compression".

image source, Met Police
image captionPolice say Noel Brown had been to a betting shop on the last day he was seen alive

Det Insp Helen Rance told Southwark Coroner's Court it was believed Mr Brown was killed between 30 November and 4 December.

She said Ms Brown was believed to have died between 2 December and 4 December.

Last week police said Mr Brown was convicted of a sex offence and jailed in 1999, but Scotland Yard's Detective Superintendent Paul Monk said that was not "screaming out" as a motive.

Mr Brown was released in 2004 and the officer said "nothing" had happened in his life in the 18 years since the conviction to suggest that was the reason for the murder.

A neighbour saw Mr Brown at his home on 30 November, and at about midday on Saturday 2 December his daughter went to his flat out of concern for his welfare.

She was not seen alive again.

Police have urged two men who visited Mr Brown's flat in the days before he was found dead to come forward.

Mr Brown, who was unemployed, was a regular visitor to betting shops, but police have found no evidence he was killed because of a large betting win.

Officers found no signs of a break-in at the flat, no indications of a struggle inside or any evidence that Mr Brown or Ms Brown had been restrained.

Senior coroner Dr Andrew Harris adjourned the inquest while the murder investigation continues.

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