Murder inquiry after man electrocuted on track

Photo: Sunil Prasannan

A major murder investigation has been launched after a Catford man was found electrocuted alongside train tracks in Bromley.

The body of James Smith, 28, was found near to Penge West train station, last Saturday morning, December 4.

British Transport Police said the circumstances surrounding Mr Smith’s death remain unclear and they were appealing for witness to the incident.

A 23-year-old man from Brockley has been arrested on suspicion of murder and conspiracy to dispose of criminal property. Four other people aged 19 to 47 have also been arrested on related offences – three were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and conspiracy to steal and the fourth person, a 47-year-old woman, was arrested for conspiracy to steal. All five have been bailed by police until January pending further inquiries.

Detective Chief Inspector Alison Palmer of British Transport Police said: “We are currently keeping an open mind as to why James was in the area at the time of the incident and are keen to hear from anyone that can help us piece together the events leading up to and after his death.”

DCI Palmer said Mr Smith’s injuries were consistent with electrocution, which suggest he died as a result of contact with the electric rail.

“This was a tragic incident that has seen a man lose his life which sadly highlights the dangers of going trackside,” said DCI Palmer. “Our thoughts remain with James’ family at this very difficult time for them.”

Anyone who may have been in the area at the time or has any information can contact police on Freefone 0800 40 50 40 quoting incident reference 72 of 04/12/10.

Information can also be passed to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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