Ranjith Kankanamalage: Police issue appeal three weeks after ‘homophobic murder’

·2-min read
Ranjith Kankanamalage (Met Police)
Ranjith Kankanamalage (Met Police)

Police have issued a renewed appeal for witnesses following the murder of Ranjith Kankanamalage in Tower Hamlets.

Ranjith, known as ‘Roy’, was killed in Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park three weeks ago today.

The 50-year-old had severe head injuries and a post-mortem confirmed they were caused by blunt force trauma, police said.

Officers from Specialist Crime are investigating the murder, which has been categorised as a homophobic hate crime from the outset.

There has been police activity at the scene involving a specialist search of the entire 27-acre park, and, though the investigation continues to move at pace, police are issuing a refreshed appeal for witnesses.

The force said Met officers will be present at the entrances to Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park between 10pm on Sunday, September 5 and 6am on Monday, September 6 to provide reassurance, talk to members of the public and share witness appeal leaflets.

Detective Chief Superintendent Marcus Barnett, policing commander for Hackney and Tower Hamlets, said: "This is a horrific murder and my thoughts are with Ranjith’s family and loved ones.

“Whilst such incidents are thankfully still very rare in London, I want to reassure that community that my officers and specialist detectives are working tirelessly to bring those responsible to justice.

“I also want to be really clear that there is no place, at all, in London for any form of hate crime and the Met is absolutely committed to tackling it and supporting victims.”

Derek Lee, from the LGBT+ Advisory Group, said: "We appeal for anyone who knows anything about this horrendous crime to come forward using the many channels available. We are aware that, while it remains unsolved, this is causing considerable concern amongst LGBTQ+ people in Tower Hamlets and across London.

“We are advising the police on sensitive ways of keeping our parks safe and wider reassurance for all communities. At the same time we ask everyone to please use common sense when going home or out late at night. We must all be vigilant."

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