Coroner puts Sunderland grandad’s inquest on hold as murder inquiry continues

Police cordon off an area in Southwick in the aftermath of David Wilson's death.
Police cordon off an area in Southwick in the aftermath of David Wilson's death.
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A coroner has said he will hold off on the inquest of a grandad as detectives renew calls to help solve his murder.

David Wilson was found dead at his Southwick flat on Sunday, December 14, sparking an investigation into his brutal killing.

A 34-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murdering the 49-year-old and is on bail until next month.

At a review into his inquest at Sunderland Civic Centre, coroner Derek Winter said he wanted to ensure Northumbria Police has the time to complete its investigation. He said: “The fact is that inquiries are ongoing and that the investigation is complex.

“I have no wish to impede or put undue pressure on the police in respect of these inquiries.”

Mr Winter adjourned the review until 10am on November 10.

I have no wish to impede or put undue pressure on the police in respect of these inquiries.

Coroner Derek Winter

As part of the inquiry, detectives have released a tape of a man who rang police from outside The Halfway House pub, a short distance from the former special officer’s home. In the call, made at 4.41am on the morning David was found, the man said his arrangements for a lift had fallen through, and needed to be taken home to Gateshead.

The team has also asked for help to identify a man in a red bobble hat who was seen carrying out a robbery on someone at an ATM in Southwick Green, between 4.09am and 4.17am.

David was from Hetton and had lived in Sunderland city centre for seven years, before moving to Southwick shortly before his death.

Lead officer renews appeal

The officer leading the hunt for David Wilson’s killer has urged those who could help the search to come forward.

Detective Inspector Mark Ord, of the force’s homicide and major investigations team, said: “Our inquiries into the murder of David are continuing and the public’s help remains crucial to us.

“This is a complicated case, we need the public to help provide vital information. Our condolences remain with David’s family, this has been, and continues to be, a difficult and distressing time for them.

“They have been incredibly brave and supportive throughout this investigation and we want to seek justice for them and for David.

“If anyone has any information they think could help in our inquiries, we would ask they please come forward and speak to us.

“It could be the information proves crucial in helping us to solve David’s murder.”

Police can be called on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.