Police release CCTV images of man in connection with murder of seven-year-old boy

Police investigating the arson murder of a seven-year-old boy at his family home last year have released new images of a man they want to speak to.

Joel Urhie died in a house fire in Deptford, south-east London, on the morning of August 7 2018.

Police believe the fire may have been started by a burning item being pushed through the letter box.

The boy’s mother and sister escaped the fire by jumping from a first-floor window.

A post-mortem examination found the cause of Joel’s death was “consistent with fire and smoke inhalation”.

A man the police wish to speak to was seen on CCTV filling a petrol can with fuel at a garage a few miles from Joel Urhie’s home, around an hour before the attack happened, police said.

The man is described as white, aged in his 30s or 40s, approximately 5ft 10in and of medium build.

He was dressed in blue jeans, blue deck shoes and a blue t-shirt with two words on it – the second of which was “removals”.

The man is known to have arrived and left the garage on a push bike.

Detective Inspector Alison Cole said: “The petrol station where these images were taken from is just a few miles from the Urhie family home in Adolphus Street, the location of the devastating attack which led to Joel losing his life.

“We are asking for help to identify this individual as we would like to speak to him as part of our ongoing work – if only to eliminate him from our inquiries. If you are this man, or you know him, please contact us as soon as possible.

“This terrible arson – one of the most horrific crimes I have seen in over 25 years of policing – claimed the life of an innocent child, a tragic loss his family will never get over, and we desperately need the help of the public to bring justice for Joel’s family.”

Two other men, aged 21 and 29, were arrested in August on suspicion of murder.

Copyright (c) Press Association Ltd. 2019, All Rights Reserved. Picture (c) Metropolitan Police / PA Wire.