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Landlord who murdered his housemate jailed for 19 years

Lorenzo Simon from Smethwick has been jailed for 19 years after subjecting a man living in his home to "slave labour" and then murdering him.

He dismembered the body of Michael Spalding and placed the parts in two suitcases which were dumped in the Birmingham canal. They were discovered by police last April.

Lorenzo Simon was jailed for 19 years. Credit: West Midlands Police

Mr Simon was convicted of murder after the trial heard that he beat Mr Spalding to death in their Oxford Road home on April 26 last year.

It was claimed Simon had been using Mr Spalding as free labour to renovate the house, which he shared with his girlfriend Michelle Bird.

She was found not guilty of murder and manslaughter but admitted assisting an offender.

She was handed a 2-and-a-half year jail term.

Michael Spalding's body was dismembered and placed in two suitcases which were dumped in the Birmingham canal Credit: West Midlands Police


Universities General Election-themed fairground

Staffordshire University Students' Union are launching a General Election themed fairground.

In a recent poll, more than 70% of the University's students have stated their intention to vote. Credit: Rui Vieira/PA Wire/Press Association Images

It is designed to engage young people in the General Election, and students will be encouraged to register to vote throughout the day.

In a recent poll, more than 70% of the University's students have stated their intention to vote. However, less than 40% know which Party they intend to vote for.

The fair's attractions have also all been given a political twist.

They include:

  • Earth Shaker - showing students have the ability to shake things up,
  • Welly toss - representing students who give a toss about politics,
  • Three-legged race - symbolising a possible coalition
  • Waltzers - politicians dancing around the issues.

CCTV released after pitch invasions at football match

Detectives investigating disorder that happened at an FA Cup match between Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion at Villa Park have released images of six more people today

The investigation was launched after disorder before the game and pitch invasions during it. Credit: West Midlands Police

Police have already shared CCTV of 11 people and 10 of those have now been identified following a huge response from members of the public on social media.

The investigation was launched after disorder before the game and pitch invasions during it.

We had a massive response from members of the public following the release of the first batch of images at the end of March which has helped us to move the investigation forward. Once again we need your help to identify the people in these images. Some of the behaviour witnessed on that day was completely unacceptable and we need to bring the perpetrators to justice."

– DCI Paul Joyce


Head injuries on agenda for FA experts' panel after Jeff Astle case

The FA has asked a number of leading professionals in head injury and concussion to form a new independent panel of experts to advise the organisation and football in England.

Jeff Astle Credit: PA

In recent years there has been an increasing awareness of the possible effects of head injuries and concussion across a number of sports including football, driven by the high-profile case of former West Bromwich Albion and England forward Jeff Astle.

At the weekend, Albion honoured their former centre-forward and celebrated his career at the fixture against Leicester City, playing in the famous all-white kit they wore in the 1968 FA Cup Final win over Everton, when Astle scored the only goal of the game to complete his record of scoring in every round of the Cup.

Man stabbed in Wolverhampton bedsit is named

Herman 'Louis' Simpson Credit: West Midlands Police

Police have named the man who was stabbed to death in a Wolverhampton bedsit on Monday.

Local man Herman Simpson, 47, died from a stab wound to his back.

Police were called to the scene at 8:30pm, and - despite the best efforts of paramedics - Mr Simpson died a short time later.

Yesterday, officers arrested three people in connection with Mr Simpson’s death, who were later released with no further action being taken against them.

Police investigate Mr Simpson's death Credit: ITV News Central

“Our thoughts are with Mr Simpson’s family and friends at this difficult time and our investigation into his murder continues.

“I can reveal that following the arrest of a woman and two men yesterday, we are now pursuing a number of lines of inquiry and we have taken a significant step forward in our investigation.

“The three arrested are being treated as witnesses only, but the public should be reassured the net is closing in on the person responsible for Mr Simpson’s death."

– Detective Inspector Warren Hines
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