Death of intruder was a ‘tragedy’ but it would have been preferable for pavement to remain clear, says senior officer

The Metropolitan police deputy commissioner, Sir Craig Mackey, has attempted to defuse tensions ignited by the death of an intruder in south-east London by saying he would have preferred the man’s family not to have laid flowers near the scene.

A standoff has developed in Hither Green this week as angry residents repeatedly tore down tributes left by relatives and friends of Henry Vincent, 37, who died after a struggle with Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, whose house he was allegedly burgling.

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