Hither Green burglary: Police vow to remain on guard at Hither Green burglar Henry Vincent’s shrine amid mounting tension

Police have vowed to remain on guard after a quiet south London street was turned into a “war zone” over a shrine to a burglar stabbed to death by a pensioner.

A spokesman for Scotland Yard confirmed a police presence would be in place into Wednesday evening following a day of heightened tension that saw floral tributes torn down for a fourth time in 48 hours.

The makeshift memorial in Hither Green was erected on Monday by family members of career criminal Henry Vincent’s family.

Vincent, 37, was stabbed to death during a scuffle with Richard Osborn-Brooks during a burglary in the early hours of Wednesday morning last week.

Police on patrol where Henry Vincent was killed whilst burgling a house in Hither Green (PA)

Police on horseback have been seen patrolling the area in Hither Green as tensions between family members and vigilantes threatened to boil over.

A police presence will remain in Hither Green into Wednesday evening (PA)

A 58-year-old resident, who has lived in the road for 18 years, said: “The flowers have made things worse. They keep going up then taken away. Now we are living in a war zone in what has always been a quiet street and it needs to stop.

“Police have to be the grown-ups and calm things down. It can’t go on.”

Vigilante: Why I tore down dead burglar’s ‘disgusting’ shrine

More than 100 bouquets as well as cards, teddies and balloons have been repeatedly put up and torn down from the fence in South Park Crescent.

On Wednesday an angry Iain Gordon, who said he was part of the Fair Society group, pulled down flowers as he declared “we’ve had enough”.

The incident follows one on Tuesday evening where a hooded man ripped down half of the flowers.

Iain Gordon pulls the flowers down from a fence opposite the house of Richard Osborn-Brooks (Gareth Fuller/PA)

A man in a beanie hat was photographed tearing down the shrine on Tuesday afternoon while a vigilante going by the alias Cecil Coley stormed to area on Monday night.

The 29-year-old told the Standard in an interview: “I found [the shrine] to be really disgusting, especially for residents living in the area who were probably friends with Mr Osborn-Brooks. They probably think Henry Vincent got what he deserved.

“A lot of the local residents felt intimidated. It is not appropriate. It is a sign of Henry Vincent’s family marking their territory.”

Another vigilante removed the flowers on Tuesday night

A Met Police spokesman said: “A small police presence remains in place in and around South Park Crescent to provide reassurance to the public.

“Officers will assess any potential offences or allegations made to police.”

Source : https://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/hither-green-burglary-police-vow-to-remain-on-guard-at-hither-green-burglar-henry-vincents-shrine-a3811801.html