Investigations launched into eight murders in South Yorkshire so far this year

Jarvin Blake was stabbed to death
Jarvin Blake was stabbed to death

Detectives are working on eight murder probes launched since the start of the year.

South Yorkshire Police's head of crime, Detective Chief Superintendent James Abdy, said the force has 'responded strongly and positively' to the spate of murders, with suspects charged over seven of the eight killings.

Erin Tomkins died of head injuries

Erin Tomkins died of head injuries

He said: "When a homicide occurs it will always be investigated fully, with the absolute care and professionalism the families of those killed would expect.

"Officers and staff within our major crime unit have worked exceptionally hard over recent weeks to gather evidence, identify suspects and make a number of vital arrests, demonstrating their commitment and determination to keeping the residents of South Yorkshire safe and bringing offenders to justice before the courts."

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He added: "Tackling armed and violent criminality is a real priority for us and we will continue to work closely with our key partner agencies and communities to reduce this threat.

Ryan Jowle was stabbed to death

Ryan Jowle was stabbed to death

"Whilst such incidents can cause alarm to the public, it is also important people know that we listen to and understand their concerns. I hope the public are reassured by how effectively we have dealt with recent incidents and the seriousness of how we treat such offending."

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Det Chf Supt Abdy added: "Our officers and staff are trained and highly capable of dealing with serious crime and critical incidents; from the moment we are contacted, to dealing with the initial response by uniformed officers, through to the skilled detectives and investigators that lead and manage investigations.

"It is tragic that so many of these incidents are preventable. This is why it is important that we also work closely with our partners and the public to look at how we can prevent and deter young people from becoming involved in such crime or from carrying weapons.”

Samuel Baker was stabbed to death in Lowedges

Samuel Baker was stabbed to death in Lowedges

"Parents, family members and friends of people involved in or on the cusp of becoming involved in violent crime or gangs can really help in getting across important messages regarding the risks and consequences of carrying weapons and knives.

"I would like to ask and encourage anyone with concerns or information about the use of weapons in South Yorkshire to get in touch with us."

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The first murder of the year was committed in March, when 22-year-old Jarvin Blake was stabbed to death in Burngreave, Sheffield in broad daylight as children were making their way home from school.

Sheffield massage parlour boss Jill Hibberd was stabbed to death

Sheffield massage parlour boss Jill Hibberd was stabbed to death

South Yorkshire Police said the dad-of-three was stabbed in his chest when a group of men jumped out of a car and chased him and a friend, who was also seriously assaulted.

Four men arrested over the murder have all been bailed pending further enquiries.

Of all the murders this year, the death of the dad-of-three, whose children were all under the age of five at the time of the fatal stabbing, is the only one for which nobody has been charged.

In May there were five murders in less than two weeks.

The first in the wave of killings came on Saturday May 19, when 42-year-old Claire Louise Smith was found dead in Union Street, Barnsley.

A post mortem examination revealed she died as a result of injuries sustained during a physical attack.

Dawid Szubert died of head injuries

Dawid Szubert died of head injuries

Penelope Brownlie, 45 and 57-year-old Justine Wainwright, who is also known as Bridget O’Keefe, both from Britannia Close, Barnsley, have been charged with murder.

A 71-year-old woman arrested in connection with the death has been released on police bail as enquiries continue.
Three days later, 22-month-old Erin Tompkins, from Gleadless Valley, died at Sheffield Children's Hospital, having being admitted with head injuries the day before.

Martin Johnson, 19, of Leighton Road, Gleadless Valley, has been charged with her murder.

The following day - Wednesday, May 23 - Ryan Jowle, 19, was stabbed to death in Tannery Close, Woodhouse.

Frank Mvila Kiongaze, 22, of Morland Road, Gleadless Valley, has been charged with murder.

A post mortem examination revealed Mr Jowle died as a result of a stab wound to his chest.

The next day - Thursday, May 24 - Samuel Baker, 15, was also stabbed to death after being attacked in Lowedges Road, Lowedges.

A 15-year-old boy, who cannot be named, has been charged with murder and a 16-year-old boy also arrested on suspicion of murder has been bailed pending further enquiries.

On Thursday, May 31, Sheffield massage parlour boss Jill Hibberd was found stabbed to death in her home.

The 73-year-old, who ran Fantasia on Attercliffe Road, Attercliffe, was found dead in the living room of her home in Roy Kilner Road, Wombwell.

Her car, a red Audi TT, was discovered stolen and was found in Newmillerdam, Wakefield, five days later.

Trevor Lee Fueloep, 40, of Willow Garth, Wombwell, has been charged with murder and burglary.

A 22-year-old Wakefield man also arrested on suspicion of murder has been released under investigation as enquiries continue.

Detectives also arrested a 31-year-old woman and a 16-year-old boy on suspicion of assisting and offender.

The boy was also held on suspicion of theft and handling stolen goods.

They have both been released while enquiries continue.
Last month, 38-year-old Dawid Szubert, who was originally from Poland but was living on Park Road, Barnsley, died after suffering head injuries in the town centre.

He fell ill in the Civic Gardens, also known as Mandela Gardens, on Sunday, June 17 and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Ricky Ramsden, 27, of Dodworth Road, Barnsley, has been charged with murder.

A 43-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder and a 27-year-old man and 32-year-old woman held on suspicion of theft have been released under investigation.

The latest murder probe was launched on Tuesday, June 26 after Glenn Boardman, 59, was stabbed to death in a house Steven Close, Chapeltown.

Michael Andrew Goddard, 50, of Steven Close,Chapeltown, has been charged with murder.

Last year there were 10 murders in South Yorkshire, with 13 investigated in 2016, another 16 in 2015, 16 in 2014 and 19 in 2013.

Anyone with any information on any of the incidents should call South Yorkshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Glenn Boardman was stabbed to death in Chapeltown

Glenn Boardman was stabbed to death in Chapeltown