Live updates

£5,000 reward after Stevenage murder

Thomas Ward Credit: ITV Anglia

A reward of up to £5,000 is being offered by Crimestoppers for information after a man was shot dead as his young family slept nearby in Stevenage.

Thomas Ward, who was 21 years old and a father to his five day old daughter Lilly was murdered on Dyes Lane, Stevenage on Tuesday April 23rd as he lay in bed with his wife Theresa.

Three men with their faces covered are believed to have attacked his caravan before Thomas came out of the caravan and was shot in the chest. He then ran from the caravan before being found by his family unconscious in undergrowth nearby.

The men are believed to have escaped in a white Audi A3.

Detective Inspector Sharn Basra, from the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit said: “I would like to thank Crimestoppers for putting forward such a large reward to help with our investigation.

“This was a horrific murder which was carried out in cold blood. It has left a young infant without her father, a woman without her husband and a family without their son and brother.

“Whilst a large number of enquiries are being made, I am hoping that someone will be able to provide information which can help us identify those responsible."

Family tribute to man who died after being shot

Thomas Ward Credit: Hertfordshire Police

Proud young dad Thomas Ward holds his new born baby in the hospital where he was to die less than a week later. **Thomas, 21, was photographed with baby Lilly in his arms at the Lister Hospital in Stevenage, Herts. Five days later he was pronounced dead after being shot in the chest.

Today his family appealed for information about the murder of Thomas on the evening of April 23 in Stevenage.**

In a statement issued by Herts Police they said: "Thomas was the father of a five day old baby girl, Lilly, who he adored. He had it all: a beautiful wife and a gorgeous baby. "**

Thomas Ward Credit: Hertfordshire Police

"The pictures show just how much he loved her. Our lives will never be the same again."

Thomas was found seriously injured at about 11.25 at night at the caravan site in Dyes Lane, Stevenage. He was rushed to hospital, where he died from a gunshot wound.**

Herts Police launched a murder investigation and are looking for a white car, which may have been used by Thomas' killers.**

Thomas leaves behind his wife, daughter, mother, father, two brothers and three sisters. They said: **

"Thomas, who mainly grew up in Germany and could speak Spanish and German, was a born again Christian. "**

"He was keen on training and fitness and he enjoyed boxing. He also had a love for Reggae music and Caribbean food. He loved football and was a great Chelsea supporter."**

The family have suffered a double tragedy with the death of Thomas' 25-year-old cousin, mother-of-three Lulu Ward who was killed on the nearby A1M motorway when she was hit by a blue Corsa car as she walked to the murder scene three days after the murder.**