Operation Panatella – third anniversary appeal

January 8th 2019 marks the third anniversary of the death of Liam Hill, who was found at 1.45pm on Friday 8th January 2016 in his flat at 70 West Parade, Rhyl.

DI Chris Bell from the Force Major Incident Team said: “I would like to take this opportunity to further appeal to the local community to help us with our investigation into the circumstances surrounding Liam’s death.”

“We are aware that Liam went to Corbett’s Bookmakers on Bodfor Street in Rhyl during the afternoon of Wednesday, 6th January. He then paid several visits to the Bar Bow pub in Rhyl before making his way home on foot at about 6.45pm.

“A person matching Liam’s description was seen walking from Bar Bow on Water Street in the direction of West Parade then along towards River Street, to his home address. He was described as appearing drunk.”   

“At approximately 7pm, Liam was seen by neighbours at the foot of the communal stairs at his home. He still appeared drunk and was helped to his feet and assisted up the stairs to his flat. He told witnesses that he had fallen, but we have been unable to identify the location of this fall.”

At the time Liam was wearing a dark blue waterproof type of jacket, which finished just below the waist

This was the same evening that Everton FC played Manchester City FC in the League Cup semi-final first leg. The kick off was 8pm at Goodison Park. The match finished 2 – 1 to Everton.

The following day, Thursday 7th January Liam spoke on the telephone with his mother. According to her he seemed fine but did tell her that he had fallen the previous evening and had hurt his shoulder.

At approximately 9:30am on Friday 8th January Liam again spoke to his mother Catherine on the phone. During the call it was apparent to her that he was confused with what he was saying.

Shortly after 1.45pm that same day, Liam was found deceased in his flat by his mother.

An investigation was launched by North Wales Police in order to establish the circumstances which led to Liam’s death.

A subsequent coroner’s inquest chaired by Coroner Mr John Gittins recorded an open verdict. We are aware that Liam died as a result of a fracture to his skull, but despite extensive enquiries officers have been unable to identify how or where the injury occurred.

DI Bell added: “Three years have since passed and we still believe someone in the community may know more about how Liam sustained his injury. We need that vital piece of information that will progress our investigation.”  

“We are particularly keen to hear from anyone who has any information in relation to Liam’s walk home from the Bar Bow pub, Water Street, Rhyl on the 6th January 2016. We would also like to know from anyone who may be aware of how Liam sustained his injuries in the days leading up to his death.”

“I would ask that anyone with any information to come forward so that we can help piece together the circumstances of Liam’s death which will allow us to progress this investigation and provide a form of closure to Liam’s family and loved ones.”

Speaking on behalf of the family, Liam sister Joyce said: “It has been 3 years now since the murder of Liam, but still we are no nearer to any answers. We need your help to give us all closure.  Someone must know something.  Any little detail which you think may be irrelevant could re-open the investigation. Please give us the answers we require and the closure for Liam.”

Posters and leaflets will be distributed around the area in an attempt to jog people’s memories.

Anyone who has any information should contact Police via the web live chat http://www.north-wales.police.uk/contact/chat-support.aspx.  Alternatively phone North Wales Police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 quoting Operation Panatella. 

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