Date: 10 Aug 1988
Samuel Graham Williamson was killed, and his body set alight in Cotlands Road, Bournemouth, on 10 August 1988.
He had been strangled with a leather belt. He had also been punched and his head hit against some concrete posts in what was described as a frenzied attack. His body had been burnt almost beyond recognition. The police said that he was 'almost unrecognisable' when he was found.
His burnt body was found in the grounds of the DHSS offices in Cotlands Road but it was thought that he had been murdered elsewhere although it was not said where.
The police said that they had been puzzled by the lack of a motive.
The police appealed for help from motorbike enthusiasts that might have been in the Bournemouth area at the time of the murder as well as for anyone who recognised the belt that Samuel Williamson had been strangled with, describing it as a biker's belt. The belt had had a heavy brass buckle. A picture of the belt was released as it was thought to have been hand made and distinctive, but it was later determined that thousands of them had been made around 1980.
The police also appealed for anyone that might have seen a fight in a dark alleyway that was used by local residents as a short cut which was near to where Samuel Williamson had lived in the Lansdowne area.
A man was charged with his murder in 1988, but the case against him was dropped due to lack of evidence.
However, he was charged again in October 2006 but was acquitted by a jury at Winchester Crown Court. He was rearrested in 2005 after the police carried out a cold case review and found his DNA amongst the material found under Samuel Williamson's fingernails.
It was also heard that his fingerprints were on a lager can that was found in the crook of Samuel Williamson's arm and that another lager can had the man's fingerprints as well as one of his hairs on it.
At the time of the man's arrest in 1987 he had been living in Glasgow. The man said that he had had a severe drinking problem at the time Samuel Williamson was murdered and that he remembered little about the events around the murder but said that he was sure that he would have recollected seeing Samuel Williamson murdered or having been involved if he had been.
Samuel Williamson was an Irish bachelor and was born in County Antrim. He was said to have had relations in Bournemouth and Ballymena.
see Bournemouth Echo
see Dorset Echo
see Sandwell Evening Mail - Thursday 30 March 1989
see Aberdeen Evening Express - Thursday 11 August 1988
see Sandwell Evening Mail - Thursday 11 August 1988
see Irish Independent - Saturday 13 August 1988