Murder investigation launched after woman and four-year-old’s bodies found in Eastbourne fire

House fire in Croxden Way, Eastbourne. Picture: Dan Jessup
House fire in Croxden Way, Eastbourne. Picture: Dan Jessup

A murder investigation has been launched after the bodies of a woman and child were discovered in a burned down Eastbourne house.

Police say they are believed to be those of the two occupants of the house in Croxden Way who were previously unaccounted for – a woman aged 34 and her four-year-old son.

The fire in Croxden Way, still from video by Greg Draven

The fire in Croxden Way, still from video by Greg Draven

Next of kin of the victims have reportedly been informed, however formal identity has yet to take place.

The incident occurred around 1am and was reported to police at 1.18am on Tuesday (10 July), and the bodies were discovered in a first floor bedroom about 12pm today (Wednesday, July 11).

A 26-year-old man who was also in the property at the time of the fire was taken to hospital with burns injuries in the early hours of Tuesday ( July 10), and police say he remains in an induced coma at this stage.

He was the partner of the woman who lived at the house and whose body is believed to have been discovered; he was not the father of the child whose body is believed to have been discovered, said Sussex Police.

A spokesperson said, “This is a difficult scene and it will take some time before forensics examinations are complete.

“The cause of the fire is currently being treated as arson and a murder investigation has been launched. No arrests have been made.”

Police are continuing to appeal for anyone with any information to report it online or call 101, quoting Operation Druffield.

Detective Chief Inspector Mike Ashcroft, of the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team, who is leading the investigation, said, “This is a dreadful incident and the worst fears have been realised. Our thoughts are with the victims, their families and the whole community at this time.

“I urge anyone with any information about this or any footage of the fire to contact us.”

Read more about the incident here.

And read a neighbour’s account of the fire here.