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Police deny losing control, as two arrested over latest London killing

Two people have been arrested on suspicion of the murder of Ian Tomlin, who was killed in Battersea, south-west London on Wednesday.

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Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea/PA)

Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea/PA)

Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea/PA)

Scotland Yard has denied it has lost control of London’s streets as the force said two men have been arrested on suspicion of murdering the capital’s latest victim.

The two suspects, in their 40s, were arrested from separate addresses on Thursday on suspicion of the murder of Ian Tomlin, 46, who was killed in Battersea, south-west London on Wednesday.

Police were called to a group fighting in a communal area at about 5.30pm.

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Ian Tomlin, died in Battersea (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Ian Tomlin, died in Battersea (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Press Association Images

Ian Tomlin, died in Battersea (Metropolitan Police/PA)

Medics battled to save the father’s life at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, but he was pronounced dead 45 minutes later.

The victim – believed to be a driver for the local council – frequently confronted drug dealers on the estate, his father has said.

Scotland Yard confirmed this was one line of inquiry the force was looking into.

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Floral tributes and a sign near the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

Floral tributes and a sign near the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Floral tributes and a sign near the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

After Scotland Yard launched a murder investigation, official figures showed a 14% increase in police-recorded homicide offences, from 630 to 719 in a year.

I don’t feel at all that we’ve lost control of the streets, I think that’s not at all accurateSuperintendent Peter Gardner

Superintendent Peter Gardner, head of the CID at Wandsworth Police, denied that the Metropolitan Police had lost control of the streets.

He said: “I certainly don’t feel it’s like that, but I understand residents’ frustration.

“We will do everything to bring this investigation to conclusion, and justice to those involved, and continue to do so, for all instances like this.

“I don’t feel at all that we’ve lost control of the streets, I think that’s not at all accurate.”

Mr Gardner said there had been previous drug-related problems on the estate.

He would not confirm or deny reports that a gunshot was heard by locals a few weeks previously.

An operation in the area last year saw 54 arrests of people for drugs and other related offences, including possession of an offensive weapon.

Mr Gardner said the recent arrests were made following information passed to the police by the public.

CCTV footage had also been “instrumental” in aiding officers.

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Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Police at the scene in Charlotte Despard Avenue, Battersea (Tom Horton/PA)

He did not say whether the men were residents of the estate or if they knew the victim.

He said: “This is a tragic incident and it’s absolutely senseless.

“We will do everything within our power to investigate this fully, bring those responsible to justice and to support the family through this devastating time.”

A post-mortem examination was taking place on Friday.

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