Date: 3 Sep 1989
Place: Chester Close, Ash, Surrey
Lewis Edward Raggett was stabbed by two knifemen in the driveway of his home in Chester Close, Ash, Surrey on 23 September 1989.
He was attacked in front of his wife after they got back from a night out in Aldershot. The two men beat him with baseball bats and then stabbed him and he got out of his Jaguar car and then escaped on a motorbike.
The men had been wearing black leathers and crash helmets. They were described as being in their late teens or early twenties.
Lewis Raggett had been stabbed eleven times and beaten with a baseball bat.
He was taken to hospital but died twenty minutes later.
He was also known as Lou Raggett and was a former chairman of Aldershot Chamber of Commerce.
He was a businessman and landlord and was known to have been tough and it was thought that he was likely to have made numerous enemies.
The police initially said that there was no motive for his murder. They said, 'This was a severe and unprovoked attack. There was no sign of a break-in. We can find no reason why it happened'.
His 55-year-old wife was later tried for murder and two count of soliciting to murder, after she was accused of hiring the two men that killed Lewis Raggett as contract killers but was acquitted. It was claimed that she had hired them after believing that he had been having an affair with a woman who worked in a dry-cleaning shop that he owned. It was alleged that she had approached people three times before enquiring into having him murdered.
It was claimed at the trial that his wife, who ran a hairdressing salon, had handed the killer the keys to padlocked gates, allowing them to walk about the wall grounds of their home. It was also claimed that she had arranged for their Alsatian dog, which was otherwise known to have been fierce and to have barked at the slightest sound, to have been silent on the night of the murder.
At the trial a man said that Lewis Raggett's wife had paid him to murder Lewis Raggett. He said that he had had a rendezvous with Lewis Raggett's wife in a multi-story car park for the purpose of arranging to murder Lewis Raggett. He said that they had not met before and that they arranged to meet in the car park in Aldershot, saying that she had told him that he would be able to identify her as she would be wearing red and lots of jewellery. He said that when they met she handed him £3,500, a half-payment on the contract, and gave him a photograph of Lewis Raggett, told him about their movements and when she wanted it carried out. However, he said that although her took her money, he had had no intention of carrying out the murder.
At the time of the murder the man, who had several convictions, had been in prison.
Lewis Raggett had owned a number of properties around Aldershot and would convert them into bedsits and rent them out to DHSS tenants. He was known as a hard-nosed businessman. A detective said, 'He had about 30 tenants, some of them patients who were settling back into the community after coming out of mental hospital. He was very tough with people who got into arrears with their rent and always had his Alsatian dog with him for protection. He didn't hesitate about turning people out if they didn't pay up'.
see Get Surrey
see Surrey Mirror
see Surrey Police
see Open University
see Irish Independent - Tuesday 26 February 1991
see Young, Robin. "Businessman killed outside his home." Times, 25 Sept. 1989, p. 4. The Times Digital Archive, https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/IF0500557226/TTDA?u=rbw_earl&sid=TTDA&xid=e47d7eff. Accessed 14 May 2020.
see "£10,000 murder hunt." Times, 26 Sept. 1989, p. 6. The Times Digital Archive, https://link.gale.com/apps/doc/IF0501773936/TTDA?u=rbw_earl&sid=TTDA&xid=76643b08. Accessed 14 May 2020.