Paul Lawrence: Sister pens emotional plea after Littlehampton grandfather killed

The family of a man killed in Littlehampton have pleaded for people with information to come forward.

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Paul Lawrence, 51, was named as the victim of an incident in Gladonian Road, around 6am, on Sunday, January 28. The plumber and gas engineer lived in Cheal Way, half a mile from where he died.

An inquest – which was was opened in Chichester on February 6 – heard that the police received a call from ambulance crews ‘in relation to a suspicious cardiac arrest’ in a public place.

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However, the victim's ‘head injury’ was ‘consistent with him falling and hitting his head’, a record of inquest stated.

Paul Lawrence, 51,  was named as the victim of a fatal incident in Gladonian Road, Littlehampton, around 6am, on Sunday (January 28). Photo: Sussex PolicePaul Lawrence, 51,  was named as the victim of a fatal incident in Gladonian Road, Littlehampton, around 6am, on Sunday (January 28). Photo: Sussex Police
Paul Lawrence, 51, was named as the victim of a fatal incident in Gladonian Road, Littlehampton, around 6am, on Sunday (January 28). Photo: Sussex Police

The report added: "He is believed to have been punched by another male causing him to fall into the road.

"A Home Office Post Mortem was unable to confirm a cause of death and so further investigations are ongoing.”

Paul’s sister Shelley has issued a heartfelt plea for anyone with information to come forward.

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Her letter to this newspaper read: “I’m wanting to ask all parents especially of teens, please speak to your children and ask if they know absolutely anything about that night.

Loved ones turn out en masse to remember Littlehampton's Paul Lawrence who was 'loved by all who knew him'. Photo: Eddie MitchellLoved ones turn out en masse to remember Littlehampton's Paul Lawrence who was 'loved by all who knew him'. Photo: Eddie Mitchell
Loved ones turn out en masse to remember Littlehampton's Paul Lawrence who was 'loved by all who knew him'. Photo: Eddie Mitchell

"Please know if you ring 101 and quote Operation Sett you will be dealt with confidentiality or use the link on the Sussex Police page. No matter how insignificant you may think please help my brother get the justice he deserves.”

A 16-year-old boy was taken into custody after the fatal incident. He was released on bail with strict conditions, including a curfew, until March 14 as enquiries continue.

Shelley said: “My lovely brother has been so cruelly ripped from me and my family.

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"My family are in pieces. My mum is broken. I never thought after receiving the call my brother had passed away that I could receive a worsening call that someone is in custody.

"My sadness took on a whole new level of pain. That knocked the breath out of me when I saw the scene on arriving at my mum’s that day.

"This pain hasn’t once subsided, it doesn’t care how much it is hurting me, it doesn’t stop.

"All I’ve wanted to do is take my mum away from Littlehampton and never return.”

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Heartfelt family tributes were paid to a ‘gentle soul’ who was ‘full of happiness and loved by all’. Friends, relatives and colleagues took part in a walk from Brighton to Littlehampton in Paul’s memory earlier this month.

Shelley added: “I’ve been shown now that it’s not Littlehampton, it’s not the people of Littlehampton.

"The recent walk that was done in honour of my brother has shown me how lovely you are and how loved my brother was here.

"The messages I personally have received have been truly overwhelming and the many posts. I have read them all many times."

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Sussex Police confirmed its investigation remains ongoing and ‘we’re still urging anyone with information to come forward’.

Paul’s daughters also issued a heartfelt plea, urging anyone who may have seen a video of the incident – which police believe ‘may be circulating online’ – to come forward, as they seek justice for their dad. Click here to watch their video appeal.