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Police are continuing to investigate the circumstances surrounding a man’s death following a fight in Old Leigh, Leigh-on-Sea.
The 18-year-old local man was assaulted in an alleyway near The Peterboat pub in High Street and taken to hospital by two people at around 6pm yesterday, Friday 26 February.
He died a short time after being admitted.
A post mortem examination found he died as a result of a single stab wound to the heart.
Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Truss, who is leading the investigation, said: “We’re progressing our enquiries into the circumstances behind this young man’s death and are treating it as a targeted incident.
“My officers are supporting his family at this distressing time and I fully understand the wider community will also be concerned and affected by what has happened.
“We are making good progress with our investigation and I would ask anyone considering taking matters into their own hands not to do so, but let us investigate so we can bring people to justice.”
As part of an increased presence, police will be using stop and search powers under Section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994. This allows uniformed officers to search people for dangerous objects and weapons without the need to have a reasonable suspicion.
These powers have been authorised for use in Old Leigh including the High Street and surrounding area as shown in the map above.
It is in place until 2am tomorrow, Sunday February 28.
A dispersal order is also in place in the same area at the same times.
Chief Inspector Chris Bradford said: “Detectives are working tirelessly to investigate the circumstances behind this tragic incident and I’d ask anyone with information, however small, to please get in touch.
“Officers have been carrying out patrols with Southend Borough Council’s community safety officers in Old Leigh throughout the day and we will continue to have an increased presence throughout the weekend.
“If you live in the area, please don’t hesitate to speak to them about any information or concerns you have.
“Any death, especially in such tragic circumstances, will understandably have an effect on the close knit community and we are aware a vigil has been organised for the young man who died.
“While we understand people wish to pay their respects, we would ask them to please do so in private at home.”
A 31-year-old man from Westcliff and a 19-year-old man from Rayleigh were arrested on suspicion of causing grievous bodily harm. They remain in custody for questioning.
Police are keen to speak to anyone who was in the area around the seawall in Old Leigh between 5pm and 6pm yesterday.
Anyone who saw what happened or has mobile phone, CCTV or dash cam footage, is asked to speak to officers on scene or submit information via https://mipp.police.uk/operation/4201020121P63-PO1
Information can also be given to independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or https://crimestoppers-uk.org