Date: 15 Nov 2017
Edward McMartin died shortly after his neighbour knocked his door off its hinges and broke into his flat at around 1am on Wednesday 15 November 2017.
He ran off and flagged down some police but died 45 minutes later from heart problems.
His neighbour, a 35-year-old unemployed man was arrested soon after and charged with his murder but the charges were later dropped after the police concluded that his death was not suspicious.
It was said that the neighbour had kicked Edward McMartin's door off its hinges and threatened him in the early hours of 15 November 2017 after which Edward McMartin called 999 and ran off.
When the police saw Edward McMartin they said that his demeanour was calm but slightly shaken and that he told them that his neighbour had been kicking his door and saying, 'Have some of this' and reaching into his pocket for something.
It was heard that the neighbour had lived in the flat for about three months and that his cousin had previously left because of other disagreements that they had had with Edward McMartin.
Edward McMartin's initial post mortem was inconclusive, but the police said that following further investigation they determined that his death was not suspicious. However, the 35-year-old unemployed man that was originally charged with Edward McMartin's murder was also charged with violence to a secure entry to a property and criminal damage for which he was convicted and given a 4-week suspended sentence with 100 hours of community work and a fine of £300.
The neighbour had denied having had a weapon or intending to harm Edward McMartin.
At the magistrates hearing the day after Edward McMartin died on 16 November 2017, the neighbours defence said, 'It’s hard to talk about but clearly there was bad blood between the deceased and the neighbour' and when he addressed the jury he asked them to put other matters out of their mind and to consider the neighbours behaviour as 'reckless at best'.
The neighbour said that the floorboards had creaked as he had walked passed Edward McMartin's room whilst he was going to the toilet and that Edward McMartin had shouted rude comments at him and that they had then had an argument through the door.
He said that he had been drinking some cider earlier and ranked his level of intoxication as a 3 out of 10. He added that he had suffered from anxiety for which he had previously taken medication.
However, the chairman of the bench at the magistrates hearing said, 'You used a high level of violence and damage was caused. We’ve also considered your previous convictions which takes us over the custody threshold'.
At the time of the magistrates hearing the neighbour had been on bail on suspicion of murder. He was rebailed on 13 December 2017 until 15 February 2019 and on 15 June 2018 the police said that they had discharged him after stating that Edward McMartin 'was not murdered'.
The men had lived in a flat in a converted manor house in Courtauld Road, Braintree. Edward McMartin was described as a gentle giant.