Mystery continues over Sunderland man found dead at Washington recycling works

Police taped off Lincoln Street and the surrounding back lanes in Pallion.
Police taped off Lincoln Street and the surrounding back lanes in Pallion.
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MYSTERY still surrounds the death of a Sunderland man whose body was found at recycling works in Washington.

Police say the results of a post mortem examination have proved inconclusive into how 26-year-old John Sumner died, but have ruled out any “third party” being involved.

Further tests will be carried out and a file has been passed to Sunderland’s Coroner as inquiries continue.

Officers sealed off several residential streets in Pallion yesterday as part of the investigation.

Detectives carried out door-to-door inquiries to gather evidence into the death.

The Echo understands the body was discovered by workers separating rubbish at Impetus Washington Recycling Centre, on Wilden Road, at about 1pm on Tuesday. Cordons were in place in back lanes and streets between the rear of St Luke’s Terrace and Sheridan Street, from Midmoor Road to the rear of Garfield Street.

Police have given Mr Sumner’s address as Lincoln Street, Pallion. However a woman, giving her name only as Naomi, contacted the Echo to say the house belonged to her.

She said Mr Sumner was a friend, who had been staying with her temporarily but would not say his permanent address.

“All I’m going to say is that he had a heart of gold,” she said.

Lynsey Emmerson, 26, who answered the door of a house in Garfield Street, said “I got in at 5am, I never saw anything.

“We get drunks cutting through the back, but apart from that, you don’t hear from anybody.”

A man living just outside the cordon, in Midmoor Road, said: “I’ve lived here 13 years and I’ve had no problems at all. It’s frightening, very frightening.”

The body is yet to be formally identified. However, police have said it is believed to be Mr Sumner.

Detective Superintendent Roger Ford, of Northumbria Police Major Crime Team, said: “I’d like to thank the people we have spoken to as part of our inquiries for their help in our investigation.

“A report will now be prepared for the Coroner.”