Jay Abatan’s family ‘can’t trust police’

Jay Abatan grew up in Worthing and was unlawfully killed ENGSNL00120101215150216
Jay Abatan grew up in Worthing and was unlawfully killed ENGSNL00120101215150216

The brother of an Eastbourne man who was killed after an unprovoked attack more than 15 years ago met Sussex Police in Lewes yesterday (Thursday) to discuss the lack of progress into the investigation.

Michael Abatan has questioned Sussex Police and says he can no longer trust them after discovering a serving officer was with the group of people who allegedly attacked his brother Jay Abatan outside a Brighton nightclub in January 1999.

Complaints led to reviews by Essex and Avon and Somerset police forces.

“My family can no longer trust Sussex Police,” he said.

“We cannot understand why such significant facts have been kept from us regarding the night my brother was attacked.

“Important material such as this should have been fully disclosed to us, Essex and Avon and Somerset forces and also to the public.

“I was led to believe that Sussex Police would be open.

“The revelation that a police officer was with the group on the night that they attacked my brother and I makes the handling of this case all the more reprehensible.”

Detective Superintendent Nick May said, “Sussex Police has accepted that mistakes were made during the initial investigation into the unlawful killing of Jay Abatan, and regret that nobody has yet been convicted of this cowardly attack,” adding, “We remain committed to investigating any new information that will assist in convicting those responsible for Jay’s death.”

Jay Abatan was 42 when he was assaulted while waiting for a taxi outside Ocean Rooms nightclub with brother Michael.After hitting his head on the pavement he suffered a fractured skull and died in hospital five days later.

Two men, Graham Curtis and Peter Bell were arrested and charged with manslaughter 24 hours after the attack but charges were later dropped cient evidence.Curtis hanged himself in 2003.