Date: 16 Dec 2012
John Roberts was found beaten to death in his home at Park Terrace, Winlaton in Gateshead.
At the time of his murder he had been on trial for the abduction or kidnapping a 14 year old girl. He had taken a girl in September 2012, who had planned to run away from home, to London to show her what it was like to be homeless. He was later arrested for her abduction and appeared at Newcastle Crown Court on 13 December 2012.
He was last seen alive two days later on 15 December 2012 at 6.30pm at the Kandola Bros shop in Winlaton where he had gone to buy some cigarette papers.
The following day, 15 December 2012, a policeman on patrol noticed his front door open, and when he went in found John Roberts dead.
The police arrested a man on 23 January 2013 on suspicion of his murder, but he was later released.
The police later arrested four people on 28 January 2013 on suspicion of his murder, two men, a 17 year old boy and a 16 year old girl, but they were also later released.
During their investigation, the police said that they found DNA from a man and a woman at John Roberts's house.
On 8 April 2013, three men were arrested but also later released.
They also later arrested another man on 9 January 2014 but he too, was also later released without charge.
Later still on 14 May 2014, the police arrested another two men on suspicion of his murder, both of whom were also later released without charge.
John Roberts was known as John 'The Badge' Roberts because he used to sell pin badges outside the Tyneside Irish Centre, near St James’ Park football stadium, when there were football matches on.