Unsolved Murders

Christopher Stanley

Age: 9

Sex: male

Date: 30 Jul 1992

Place: Hounslow Heath, Middlesex

Christopher Stanley was found dead in a wartime pillbox near Hounslow Heath golf course on 30 July 1992.

Christopher Stanley's 24-year-old neighbour was tried for his murder but acquitted. The man was both Christopher Stanley's neighbour as well as his aunt's ex-boyfriend.

They had lived in St Aubyns Avenue in Hounslow. Christopher Stanley had attended Orchard Junior School.

It was said that the man had lured Christopher Stanley, who was described as 'happy and trusting', to the pillbox where he was stripped naked and strangled.

The neighbour claimed that he had left Christopher Stanley hours before, safe and well. However, at his trial the police claimed that he had concocted an elaborate series of lies to avoid taking the blame for the murder which they said they had found to be lies.

The man was a redundant council packer.

Christopher Stanley was described as a happy and well cared for child who had man friends locally. It was said that he usually played in his front garden or in the street and normally had to be home by 7pm and was usually never more than a couple of minutes late. It was said that he was never allowed out after dark and was not allowed to go to Hounslow Heath.

The court heard that on 29 July 1992, in the early evening he had been playing in St Aubyns Avenue with a neighbour’s 7-year-old boy whose mother said that she checked the boys regularly.

The neighbours said that at about 7pm they saw the man tried come along and talk to the two boys and said that the boy's grandfather called him in. They said that shortly after they saw Christopher Stanley running past his house and then saw the man walking along in the same direction.

It was noted that Christopher Stanley was never seen alive again.

He was found dead in the pill box the following morning at 10am, 30 July 1992 by two teenage boys. The pillbox was on Hounslow Heath near the 14th green of Hounslow Heath golf course.

It was thought that he had been strangled without putting up much of a fight and then dragged into the pillbox.

The police said that the statement that the man gave regarding his movements on the evening and what he was wearing could be proven to be false and added that he was unable to explain why a large number of people had contradicted his version of events.

The police also said that forensic evidence also indicated that footprints in the pillbox could have been made by shoes that he had been wearing on the night.

It was noted that the man had given the police a clear and sure statement of what he had done on the evening, six hours after Christopher Stanley's body was found.

He said that after he saw Christopher Stanley in St Aubyns Avenue, Christopher Stanley turned left into Hanworth Road and went off towards Hampstead Heath and that he never saw him again. He said that when he left Christopher Stanley he went to Cromwell Road where he saw a friend and that after that he went window shopping in Hounslow High Street and bought a can of lager at an off-licence and then went back to Cromwell Road to see his friend again and then went home.

However, the police said that when they spoke to the man's friend, he told them that the man only called once that night at 10.15pm. The friend also said that when the man arrived he appeared to be sweating heavily and that it almost seemed as though he had had a shower, noting that his hair was matted and sticking to his head. He said that the man told him that there was 'a lot of old bill flying about' and asked him for a lift home by car, but the friend said that he refused.

The police said that other people told them that when they had seen the man he appeared to be hyped up and puffing and speaking faster than he usually did and seemed out of breath.

The police said that two weightlifters saw the man walking towards the children's park on the heath with a boy who they described as 'just a kid'.

They also said that at about 8.15pm, two golfers that had been playing golf on Hounslow Heath golf course said that they saw a man that fitted the man tried for Christopher Stanley's murders description with a young boy aged about 8 to 10 years. They said that the pair were a short distance from the pillbox where Christopher Stanley was found the following day. However, they were unable to pick the man out at an identity parade.

The police said that all the witnesses that had seen the man had said that he had been wearing a white t-shirt, and not the striped shirt that he said he had been wearing. Christopher Stanley's 7-year-old friend said that when he saw the man that was thought to have gone off with Christopher Stanley, he had been wearing a rude tee-shirt with pictures of ladies with no clothes on the back. The rude tee-shirt was said to have also been seen by other people.

After the man was arrested, he exercised his right to silence.

The man was acquitted of Christopher Stanley's murder at a trial in 1993.

The police noted that they had not been able to find Christopher Stanley's clothes.

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

see find.galegroup.com

see "Murder appeal." Times [London, England] 1 Aug. 1992: 4. The Times Digital Archive. Web. 19 July 2013.

see Independent

see Court News UK

see Herald Scotland

see Independent

see Independent

see Total Crime