West Sussex murder investigation: Tributes are paid as family is formally identified by police

Tributes have been paid as police formally identified four bodies found in a West Sussex house.

Sussex Police said officers attended a property in Duffield Lane, Woodmancote, near Westbourne in West Sussex on March 29.

A spokesman added: “Inside, officers found the bodies of 42-year-old Robert Needham, 40-year-old Kelly Fitzgibbons and their two children four-year-old Ava Needham and two-year-old Lexi Needham.”

Police said it is believed to be an isolated incident and officers are not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.

Kelly Fitzgibbons (centre) with Ava Needham (left) and Lexi Needham (right). Photo: Sussex Police

The post-mortems took place on Thursday and Friday (2 and 3 April) and the provisional causes of deaths were recorded as injuries consistent with gunshot wounds.

The inquest into the deaths will open on April 8.

Kelly’s sister, Emma, said: “Kelly was a wonderful and special person. She was kind, caring, funny and always smiling with an amazing love for life.

“Kelly was a dedicated and loving mother and adored Rob and her two beautiful children. She had many friends and was devoted to her friends and family.

Robert Needham. Photo: Sussex Police

“Kelly will be missed by so many people and has left a hole in our hearts that will never be filled.”

Robert’s family said: “Robert was a man with a loving, caring young family. He had a beautiful partner Kelly and daughters Ava and Lexi, who he cared for deeply and who cared for him.

“He was a quiet and thoughtful son and brother as well, always there to help when he was needed.

“We are devastated and bewildered at this most difficult of times.”