1983 Gary Collins Murder

From Historical Hastings

Two weeks before Christmas 1983, 25 year old Gary Collins and his alsation-cross dog, Trudie, were reported missing from their flat in St. Thomas's Road. They were last seen leaving their rented home on the 12th of December. Collins worked part-time as an egg packer, but also dealt in drugs; a Crimewatch reconstruction of his last movements naming him as 'the man with the BMW and dog'.

His BMW was found at Battle Railway Station, and Gary and his dog were found stabbed to death some distance away in woodland near the Gypsum Mine in Brightling, three months after their disappearance[1]. Gary was barely recognisable, being found with a fractured skull, five stab wounds in the back and his throat had been cut[2].

Detectives assigned to investigate the murder discovered that he had met contacts associated with the drugs trade in London just prior to his death - he visiting Camden, Islington and Kensington. It was discovered that he had changed from his moccasins into a pair of Wellington boots prior to his death. His moccasins were never found and their whereabouts are an important clue to the investigation. Forensic evidence suggested that Gary was alive when he went to the woods. Was he forced there, or was he retrieving some hidden drugs or money? Another theory was that his murder was a contract killing[1].

Police sought the whereabouts of a blond woman in a brown coat and green Triumph Toledo seen with Gary on the A21 Battle to London Road, on at least two occasions. The same woman was seen on another occasion with two men who were carrying two grey disposable bags. At the time of writing, the murder remains unsolved with Sussex Police revisiting the file periodically to see if any further information may be discovered. ==References & Notes=={{Expansion depth limit exceeded||smwbasepage={{Expansion depth limit exceeded}}}}

  1. a b The Argus: Police reopen murder files | The Argus, accessdate: 9 November 2021
  2. The cold case murder of “The Man with the BMW and the Dog” : ColdCaseUK: The cold case murder of “The Man with the Dog” : ColdCaseUK, accessdate: 9 November 2021