‘I just want justice for my son’ – mother of Matthew Schofield makes public appeal six months on from attack
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The mother of a man who died after being assaulted is urging anyone who may have seen the attack to help police bring the offenders to justice.
Matthew Schofield was found dead in Belgrave Road, close to the junction with Belgrave Circle, Leicester, after being assaulted by a group of men at the location shortly before 3am on Sunday 11 June.
As part of the ongoing murder investigation, police have arrested a number of people but no charges have yet been made.
Today (Monday 11 December), marks six months since the attack on the 34-year-old father-of-one.
His mother, Emma Daniels, is still struggling to come to terms with knowing she will never see her son again and the circumstances surrounding his death has left her feeling devastated and in a constant state of panic.
Matthew with his mother Emma Daniels
Alongside police, the 53-year-old nurse is urging anyone who may have been in the area to think back and “do the right thing” if they have any information which could help.
She said: “It’s been six months since Matt died and although I am going to work and trying to do normal things, I can’t stop the feeling of panic I get every time it hits me that I will never get to see him again.
“The gravity of his death and the circumstances of how he died bring so many emotions – anger, devastation, panic and fear but the worst is a constant feeling of numbness that I just can’t shake.
“It’s bad enough losing a son but it is even worse to lose one in this way. The thought of him lying on his own frightened or in pain is something I can’t get over. As a nurse I know how important it is to have a loved one there in the final minutes – to hold their hand and reassure them. Matt didn’t even have that.
“It is not just me who is suffering – I have lost a son but there is also a six-year-old boy who has lost his daddy.
“We know there were several people there the night that Matt died and no one tried to help him – this is something I just can’t comprehend. If someone would have called for help anonymously my son could still be alive.
“If anyone knows who was involved in the incident that night or anyone who was driving or walking past the location at the time and saw anything suspicious, please do the right thing and come forward. There are people out there who know what happened – surely it is playing on someone’s conscience. I just want justice for my son.”
Although the attack took place in the early hours of the morning, police believe there may have been people in the area, possibly making their way home after a night out in the city centre.
There may also have been people driving past the location at the time, particularly taxi drivers, who could have useful information to assist further with the investigation.
To help jog people’s memory, police have released CCTV footage of Matthew on his bike going to a nearby garage around an hour and half before the incident occurred.
At 1.47am on Sunday 11 June, Matthew was also captured on police body worn video after he rode past officers dealing with a separate incident and stopped to talk to them.
Both videos show what Matthew was wearing when he was assaulted.
Detective Inspector Mark Parish from the East Midlands Special Operations Unit Murder Investigation Team is leading the investigation into Matthew’s death.
He added: “The death of Matthew is still being actively investigated by me and detectives in the team.
“As part of our ongoing enquiries to identify those responsible for the assault I would like to make a further appeal, six months on from the incident, for people to cast their minds back.
“Were you out in Leicester city centre until the early hours on Sunday 11 June? Were you driving past the area of Belgrave Road and Belgrave Circle shortly before 3am?
“I know it might be difficult to remember events from six months ago but I am hoping releasing the footage of Matthew from the hours before he died might help to jog people’s memory.
“There may also be people who know what happened that night but have chosen not to speak to police. It is not too late to come forward and tell us what you know. This can be done anonymously if you do not want to speak directly to police.
“At the heart of this investigation is a grieving mother who deserves to know fully what happened to her son and to see that anyone responsible is brought to justice.”
During the past six months police have arrested a total of 14 people. Ten currently remain on police bail, one person has been released under investigation and three were released with no further action.