CCTV released in Belfast murder hunt

Published Thursday, 02 January 2014
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Detectives investigating the murder of Basil McAfee, who was hit over the head with an axe and stabbed during what police say was a "savage" and "frenzied" attack, have released two CCTV images of the victim taken shortly before he was killed in north Belfast.

Mr McAfee, 50, was found by his mother at his home in Henderson Avenue before Christmas, on Friday 20 December. His house had also been ransacked.

The father-of-two was last seen buying alcohol at an off-licence on Cavehill Road a day before his body was discovered.

The CCTV images released by police were taken in the premises two weeks ago.

They show Mr McAfee in dark clothing and carrying a plastic bag at around 4pm on Thursday 19 December.

Detective Chief Inspector John McVea, who is leading the murder investigation, says his killer is still at large and is a danger to others in the community.

"Basil suffered a violent death. I believe he was beaten about the head with a sharp implement and then stabbed. This was a savage, frenzied attack. A number of items were taken from the house," he said on Thursday.

DCI McVea has appealed for anyone who recognises Mr McAfee in the pictures to get in touch.

Whoever did this is a danger to others in the community while still at large.

Detective Chief Inspector John McVea

"We want people to look at them and think about whether they recognise Basil and whether they saw him anytime between 4pm on Thursday 19 December in the off-licence until he was found in Henderson Avenue at 1pm on Friday 20 December," DCI McVea said.

"We believe Basil was with other people but so far they have not come forward. We need to know who he was with and where he was."

He had only just moved into the area but police are investigating the possibility that he knew his attacker.

"The Major Investigation Team is following a number of lines of enquiry but we need people to come forward with information about Basil's movements between 4pm on Thursday and 1pm on the Friday", DCI McVea said.

"Basil McAfee's life was violently taken from him at a time of year when people expect to be happy, not mourning a loved one whose life has been suddenly and brutally ended. It is two weeks today since Basil was last seen alive.

"I am asking anyone with information about Basil's movements or who saw any suspicious activity in or around Henderson Avenue just off the Cavehill Road to contact detectives at Seapark police complex on 0845 600 8000 or alternatively people can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111."

A 34-year-old man arrested on 23 December in the south Belfast area as part of the investigation was released unconditionally on Boxing Day.

On Thursday detectives returned to the scene of the killing to talk to local people who might have known Mr McAfee and to gather information about his movements in the hours before his death.

His funeral took place in north Belfast earlier this week.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
2 Comments
l in newtownabbey wrote (105 days ago):
so sad R.I.P
Carol in W Belfast wrote (105 days ago):
Hope the coward is caught!!
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