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Murder investigation after Razvan Sirbu found dead in Tovil

By Claire McWethy

A murder investigation into the death of a homeless man found beaten to death is continuing today.

Officers have been carrying out enquiries at the Loose Valley Conservation area, in Tovil near Maidstone, where 21-year-old Razvan Sirbu was found dead on Sunday at 7.15am.

Results from a post-mortem examination yesterday revealed that he died from blunt force trauma to the head and body.

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Razvan Sirbu. Picture: Kent Police
Razvan Sirbu. Picture: Kent Police

As part of the investigation a photograph of the victim has been provided by the family to appeal to anyone who may have seen Mr Sirbu or was in the area between 4pm on Saturday, May 6 and 7am on Sunday, May 7.

Officers are continuing to investigate and no arrests have yet been made.

The Romanian national had been a visitor at the Maidstone Day Centre, in Knightrider Street, on several occasions.

Video: Murder investigation launched after body found in Tovil

It is not known exactly when he came to England, but an online video shows him driving around Gravesend in November.

At one point, it’s thought he was an agency worker for 24-7 Employment Solutions in Tunbridge Wells.

Locals believe Razvan Sirbu, who was from Iasi, the second largest city in Romania, had previously been living rough in a tent behind bushes on Tovil Hill, close to the busy B2010, the road that leads to the Tesco and Lidl supermarkets.

Police in Cave Hill, Tovil after the discovery of Mr Sirbu's body
Police in Cave Hill, Tovil after the discovery of Mr Sirbu's body

A man was seeing dragging a tent into Crisbrook Meadow on Saturday morning, and a tent was found near to where the body was discovered.

Cave Hill resident Steve Small, who lives opposite the millpond, said a stranger in a green anorak had been sitting on the bench by the water for most of Saturday, watching the ducks.

He said: “He wasn’t causing any trouble.

“In fact, he was smiling a lot and seemed quite happy. But it was unusual for someone to sit there that long and without any company.”

Following the grim discovery on Sunday, a dozen police vehicles, including forensic investigation vans, were lined up in Cave Hill in Tovil, and officers taped off Crisbrook Meadow and Lower Crisbrook millpond.

Mr Sirbu's body was found in the woods near Crisbrook Meadow
Mr Sirbu's body was found in the woods near Crisbrook Meadow

On Tuesday, as the cordon was lifted, people began to leave flowers at the scene of the tragedy.

Maureen Williams, who lives close by, was one of the first to visit to lay flowers. Fighting back tears, she said: “It’s an absolutely terrible thing to have happened. We can only hope the young man had found some solace in our beautiful valley.”

Police initially said the death was "unexplained", and were treating it as suspicious, but it was only after the post-mortem examination that the investigation became a murder inquiry.

Anyone with information should call Kent Police on 101 quoting crime reference YY/011763/17.

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