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Police name Gossops Green murder victim

Residents are still in shock as investigations continue.

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Police are continuing to investigate the murder of a woman in Crawley.

The woman has now been formally identified as Christina Abbotts, age 29, who was living at the address where she was found by police.

Police were called at 10.30pm on Friday (May 25) from friends of Christina concerned she hadn’t turned up to pre-arranged plans in London.

Officers attended a flat in Highams Hill and found her dead in a bed.

A post mortem was conducted and a preliminary cause of death is blunt force trauma to the head.

A 47-year-old man, who was at the property when officers attended, was arrested on suspicion of murder and remains in custody at this time. Magistrates have granted the investigating officers a further 36 hours to detain the man.

The suspect and victim were known to each other.

Detective Chief Inspector Emma Heater said: “We are supporting Christina’s family, who aren’t local to Crawley, at this very distressing time. They have asked for privacy while they start to grieve.

“We are investigating the circumstances of her death and are keen to hear anyone who might have seen or heard anything which might help with our investigation. Please speak to us in confidence with any information, however small.”

Anyone with information or who saw or heard anything suspicious is asked to contact police immediately onlinequoting Operation Grayhill.

Alternatively, you can visit Crimestoppersor contact the independent charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Crime

Crawley man jailed for over 4 years after racist and homophobic abuse at Brighton Pride revellers

A man who hurled racist and homophobic abuse at revellers heading to Brighton Pride has been jailed for more than four years.

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Ryan Brown was heading to Pride himself when he threatened to ‘knock a woman out’ and shouted racist and homophobic terms at train passengers.

The incident happened shortly after 5pm on Saturday 5 August 2017.

The 31-year-old from Hastings Road in Crawley, West Sussex, resisted arrest at Brighton and had to be restrained by BTP officers.

In his pocket he had a large number of small bags containing MDMA.

He was found guilty of possessing class A drugs with intent to supply and causing fear of violence through racially charged and homophobic language.

Brown was also sentenced at the same time for a separate matter which included affray, criminal damage, and assault with intent to resist arrest which he pleaded guilty to in December 2018.

He was jailed for four years and six months at Hove Crown Court on Thursday 10 January.

British Transport Police DC Imogen Sweeney said:

“I would like to thank the victim in this case. She was subjected to a frightening ordeal by Brown, receiving homophobic abuse and witnessing racist abuse. 

“She has remained determined to pursue justice throughout this investigation and I have nothing but admiration and praise for her strength.

“Brighton Pride celebrates diversity and equality, values that Brown clearly needs education in. I believe this sentence reflects the seriousness and particularly nasty nature of his offending on that day.”

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