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UPDATE: Man charged with Preston murder

rosie darbyshire

Published by Alice Sofield at 10:39pm 7th February 2019 (Updated 3:24pm 8th February 2019)

A man has been charged with the murder of Preston woman Rosie Darbyshire.

The 27-year-old was found on the pavement on Pope Lane in the Moor Nook area of Ribbleton on Thursday morning (7/2/19) at around 2am.

Now 25-year-old Benjamin Topping has been charged with her murder.

The police say Rosie was subjected to a brutal and sustained assault.

A post mortem confirmed she died as a result of serious head injuries. 

Topping will now appear in Preston Magistrates' Court tomorrow morning (9/8/19).

rosie darbyshire

Lancashire Constabulary have today referred the matter to the Independent Office of Police Conduct following some previous contact between Rosie and the Constabulary prior to her tragic death.

This is standard practice in such circumstances. 

Rosie’s family have been visited and made aware of the charge and the referral to the IOPC.

They have family liaison officers providing them with support at this extremely difficult and sad time.

Paying tribute to her, Rosie’s family said:

“It doesn't seem real that our crazy, wig-wearing, talented, goofy Rosie won't be bursting through the door in song anymore.

"We are utterly heartbroken and don't doubt that this devastating news will be affecting so many more people than we could ever imagine. We ask for time to grieve and attempt to process this as a family. Rosie's wonderful son is our priority right now.”

The officer leading the investigation, DCI Geoff Hurst from Lancashire’s Force Major Investigation Team (FMIT) continued:

“Firstly my thoughts are with Rosie’s family who are understandably devastated. We have family liaison officers providing them support at this extremely difficult and sad time.

“We are treating this as a murder and believe that Rosie’s attacker was known to her. We do not believe there is any kind of wider threat to the local community.

“I have a team of people working on getting to the bottom of what happened to Rosie and would like to reiterate my appeal to anyone who may have seen or heard anything in the area at the time to get in touch as soon as possible as you could have vital information. There will be extra officers out and about in the vicinity of where this tragic incident happened so please speak to them if you have any concerns or you know something you want to share with us.”

The police are are continuing their investigation and ask anyone with information about the incident to call 101 quoting log 433 of February 7th. Alternatively, you can report information online here https://mipp.police.uk/ by clicking on 'Operation Bond' and filling in a short form.

The police have also thanked the local community for their on-going support.

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