Counter-terror police take over investigation into murder of MP Sir David Amess

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The Anti-Terrorism Police has taken over the investigation into the murder of Sir David Ames.

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The Conservative MP was stabbed Friday while meeting constituents at a routine public surgery.

The 69-year-old suffered multiple injuries in the attack at the Belfair Methodist Church in Leh-on-Sea.

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Essex Police said a 25-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murder, and counter-terrorism detectives were investigating his motives.

Chief Constable Ben-Julian Harrington said: “The investigation is in its early stages and led by officers from the specialist counter-terrorism command.

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“It will be up to investigators to determine whether this is a terrorist incident.”

Granthshala Understands that the suspect is of Somali origin, and the killing is currently being treated as a possible Islamist terrorist attack.

The investigation is also looking at whether there are mental health issues. Security officials say spies are believed to be examining the suspects’ telephone records.

The father of five children was the second sitting MP to be killed in five years after the 2016 attack on Labor MP Joe Cox.

He was assassinated by a neo-Nazi outside a constituency surgery in Burstall, West Yorkshire.

His widower, Brendan Cox, wrote on Twitter: “My thoughts and love are with David’s family. That’s all they matter now. This brings everything back.

“The pain, the loss, but also how much love the public gave us after the loss of Joe. I hope we can do the same for David now.”

Mr Cox said attacking lawmakers was an “attack on democracy itself”, adding: “There is no excuse, no justification. This is as cowardly as it gets.”

Police were called to the scene soon after Friday afternoon and said the surrounding roads had been sealed off.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “We were called to an address on Eastwood Road North just after 12.05pm on Friday to report that Sir David, 69, had been stabbed.

“Despite the best efforts of paramedics, sadly he died on the spot. A 25-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murder and is currently in custody.

“We have recovered a knife from the scene and are not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.”

Investigators were urging anyone who had seen anything or had CCTV, dash cam or doorbell footage to come forward.

Sir David had advertised the surgery, which is a regular opportunity for constituents to air their views and seek assistance, on his Twitter page on Tuesday, giving the location and contact details to book an appointment.

In a book published last year, Eyes and Ears: A Survivor’s Guide to Westminster, Sir David reflected on the impact of the killing of Ms Cox and other MPs.

Sir David wrote, “We all make ourselves readily available to our constituents and often deal with members of the public who have mental health problems, this can happen to any of us.”

He said the increased security concerns prompted MPs to change the way they interacted with the public, and that constituency surgery influenced the “great British tradition of people meeting their elected politicians openly”. .

Sir David said he has experienced “nuisance” from people visiting his home in the past, and has received frequent abuse on social media.

He called for the law to be changed so that those making derogatory remarks could be identified, saying he was disappointed that “these ignorant cowards are allowed to get away with appalling behaviour”.

Tributes poured in from across the political spectrum on Friday for Sir David, the longest serving parliamentarian.

The Prime Minister called him “one of the kindest, nicest, gentlest men in politics” and praised “nearly 40 years of uninterrupted service to the people of Essex and the whole of the United Kingdom”.

Sir David was first elected to Parliament in 1983 to represent Basildon, and then stood for election in Southend West in 1997.

He was the chairman of the all-party parliamentary British-Qatar group, and recently met with the country’s emir in Doha.

On his website, he listed his main interests as “animal welfare and pro-life issues”. Sir David is survived by his wife and five children.

Essex Police said anyone citing Incident 445 of 15 October should contact the force.

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Credit: www.independent.co.uk /

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