Unsolved Murders

Duncan Clift

Age: 27

Sex: male

Date: 24 Mar 1991

Place: Wentworth Car Park, Hexham

Source: www.northumbria.police.uk

Duncan Clift was run over by a man driving a stolen high-performance car in Wentworth car park in Hexham.

He was an off-duty policeman and had spotted a man trying to steal a car and had gone over to stop him, but the car drove straight at him and ran him over.

He died two days later in Newcastle General Hospital without regaining consciousness.

A man was charged but cleared of both his murder and manslaughter.

It was thought that the driver of the stolen car might have panicked when Duncan Clift had tried to stop him stealing the car. A detective said that the man might have first panicked when he saw the owner of the car approaching and again when he was then confronted by two men as he tried to get away.

Duncan Clift's friend said that he and Duncan Clift had tried to wave down the white Nissan Bluebird turbo but said that the thief instead just drove straight at Duncan Clift, inflicting fatal head injuries on him.

During the investigation, the police appealed to tourists who might have taken photographs in Hexham town centre as they might have captured the car thief on film.

They also appealed to anyone who might have seen the car as it left Hexham and sped off towards Prudhoe to get in touch with them.

The 25-year-old man who was charged with Duncan Clift's murder and manslaughter, was cleared of killing Duncan Clift at Newcastle Crown Court on 7 February 1992. The man admitted that he had tried to steal property out of the Nissan Bluebird, but that he had never driven it and that he had been on a bus home when Duncan Clift was fatally injured.

Duncan Clift was a policeman in the Kent police force and had travelled from his home in Tunbridge Wells to Slaley near Hexham, for a long weekend with his family.


*map pointers are rough estimates based on known location details as per Place field above.


see Chronicle Live

see Hexham Courant

see The Guardian

see Newcastle Evening Chronicle - Monday 10 February 1992

see Newcastle Journal - Tuesday 26 March 1991

see Newcastle Journal - Friday 07 February 1992

see Newcastle Evening Chronicle - Monday 10 February 1992

see Newcastle Evening Chronicle - Monday 03 February 1992