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Monday, 22 September 2014

Former Carlisle man stabbed to death on his doorstep

Police have launched a murder investigation after a former Carlisle man was brutally stabbed to death on his own doorstep.

Neighbours who heard a scream at 10am on Monday found 51-year-old electronics expert Gordon Ian Stalker collapsed in a pool of blood.

The knife-wielding attacker left him to die in the hallway of his home in Elm Grove, Brighton.

Paramedics tried to revive him but Mr Stalker died at the scene.

Murder squad detectives confirmed today that the dead man had been stabbed at least six times in the chest and the side of his body.

They believe he probably knew his killer.

Officers are trying to trace a man who was seen fleeing from the scene of the murder by neighbours.

Though he had lived in Brighton for some years, Mr Stalker still had close relatives – including his father – living in the Carlisle area.

On the social networking website Facebook, Mr Stalker had named Carlisle as his home city.

In the area where he lived, he was known for supporting the Lewes Road Community Garden Project, which was created on the derelict site of a petrol station.

In an online tribute, friend Duncan Blinkhorn said: “Many of you will have known the lovely Gordon, who did so much to make the garden a welcoming and vibrant space and helped so many people.

“He was brutally murdered at his home on Elm Grove on Monday in an attack that feels impossible to comprehend.

“Many of us who are involved in the garden are in a state of shock at this tragic and senseless loss.”

Police have now issued an appeal for information as they hunt for both the killer and the murder weapon.

Two men arrested within hours of the killing have both been released unconditionally by police.

One is being treated as a key witness.

The investigation is being led by detective chief inspector Trevor Bowles, of Sussex Police Major Crime Branch.

He said officers were working on the theory that the killing was not random.

He said : "We’re beginning to piece together the events which led to the death of this man.We still urgently need to trace the murder weapon.

“We have spoken to a number of witnesses who are helping to put together exactly what happened and why. It’s quite likely the confrontation was visible to passers-by who may not have realised its seriousness.”

Locals suggested Mr Stalker had a reputation as a good listener, whose popularity and close friendships with women may have provoked jealousy.

As news of the murder spread, friends gathered at the community garden he helped to create in Lewes Road and wept.

In recent months, Mr Stalker was a leading figure in a campaign against plans for a Tesco convenience store, betting shop and flats at the site. One garden regular said Mr Stalker was an “absolutely wonderful individual”, a kind, gentle and caring man, who was loved by everyone.

Just a day before his death he helped lead a memorial at the garden for Dominique McDonald, 25, another regular at the park, found dead near Brighton Marina on January 22.

Friend Gemma Williams said: “My last memory of him was on Sunday. At the end of the day as it was all winding down Gordon sat and played his electric guitar quietly with an amp. It was a really nice time.

“Gordon was always completely involved with every event in the garden. He was always up for being around people and doing good things.”

Did you know Gordon Ian Stalker? Call reporter Thom Kennedy on 01228 612258, email him at tkennedy@cngroup.co.uk or leave a comment below

Have your say

I knew Gordon back in the late 70's, I worked at the Cumberland Building Society. An easy going, soft spoken man with a constant smile on his face, very sad when anyone is murdered whether you know them or not...

Posted by Steven Oswald on 18 February 2010 at 09:04

Many people will remember Gordon who went to Belah School in Carlisle. He was a kind person and ver5y friendly. The stalker family lived in Caird Avenue. Gordon had a sister called Heather who if I remember correctly was a little older than him. What a real shame he should have died in this way.

Posted by Kevin Stuart on 17 February 2010 at 13:46

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