£20,000 reward offered in South Croydon murder inquiry

Murder victim: Leroy Mitchell, 35, was a father of three

Crimestoppers, the independent charity, is offering a £20,000 reward for information in connection with the investigation into the murder of Leroy Mitchell, a 35-year-old family man who was shot in a car park off Birdhurst Road, South Croydon, on October 2 after attending a party nearby.

Following the victim’s funeral earlier this week, his family has issued the following open letter:

“To the people responsible for the death of my son,

“Let me tell you about the man you have taken away from me.

“Leroy Martin Mitchell was born in 1986 in Croydon to his mother Maura and father Ronald. Leroy was a cheeky child, and we loved him for it. Even as he grew older, he was always sporting a cheeky grin and trying to play tricks on me – which I would always end up laughing with him about.

“Everyone remembers Leroy with a smile on his face, and his dimples showing.

“Leroy was a central part of our family, and in the weeks before Leroy passed, he was planning to get everyone together. Siblings, cousins, family and friends – Leroy loved us to all be close.

“Leroy fell in love with his fiancée Louise after they met in 2004. When he died, they had been together for 17 years, and Leroy had three sweet children who we call his ‘mini-mes’.

“Leroy had picked up an interest in fishing. He and his friends would go to Norwood Lakes for the afternoon, but they’d always end up talking deep into the night, sharing stories and, occasionally, catching a fish or two.

“On Monday last week, I held a funeral for the man I describe in this letter – my own son.

“I cannot believe that, this Christmas and every Christmas after this, my family will be without one of their most valued members, and my grandchildren will be without their father.

“I want to direct this message to whoever is responsible for killing my son: You know who you are. You have broken dozens of people’s hearts. Your actions have left a mark on my entire family.

“To the Croydon community, and anyone who has information about what happened to my son. Whilst the person or people responsible for Leroy’s death are free, there should be no silence on the streets.

“Please read my letter. Please think about coming forward.”

In a statement issued by Scotland Yard this morning, the Metropolitan Police say that a 25-year-old man has been arrested, and released on bail.

To support the Metropolitan Police with their investigation, the independent charity Crimestoppers is offering a reward of up to £20,000 for information they exclusively receive – either online at Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling freephone 0800 555 111 – that leads to the conviction of the person or people responsible for Leroy Mitchell’s murder.

“We are independent of the police and give you an alternative,” said Alexa Loukas of Crimestoppers.

“Leroy’s family and friends have been left devastated and are desperate for answers as to what exactly has happened to him. Every single day they have to live with the consequences that Leroy has been cruelly taken away. Our charity is supporting this investigation by offering a reward for anonymous information that we receive that helps solve this terrible crime.

“Losing a loved one in these circumstances is tragic. If you know about who was involved or what happened and you wish to not give your personal details, then our charity is here to help. Contact Crimestoppers and you’ll stay 100 per cent anonymous. All we want to know is the information you have – not your name or details.

“If you have information linked to this murder, no matter how small, I urge you to make a difference and call our UK Contact Centre.”

Only information passed to Crimestoppers using the untraceable anonymous online form at http://www.crimestoppers-uk.org or via the 0800 555 111 freephone number will qualify to receive this reward.

Computer IP addresses are never traced and no one will ever know you contacted Crimestoppers. For telephone calls, there is no caller line display, no 1471 facility and calls have never been traced.

To contact police directly, please call the Incident Room on 020 8785 8244 and quote CAD1523/02OCT21.

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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