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Tributes to businessman shot dead by intruders at Dorset home

Credit: Dorset Police

Police are hunting "at least two" suspects after a businessman was gunned down during a botched burglary at his £1 million home.

Guy Hedger was fatally wounded at his house in the East Dorset village of St Ives in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The 61-year-old former insurance executive was rushed to hospital, but died of his injuries shortly after arrival.

The surrounding area was cordoned off Credit: ITV Meridian

Dorset Police superintendent Kevin Connolly said the killing was being treated as an "aggravated burglary," adding: "The offenders, we believe, went in to steal and they have subsequently shot an innocent man".

Mr Hedger was listed as living at the property with Simon-Pierre Hedger-Cooper, 48, a voluntary sector worker who was reportedly his husband of 12 years.

Police said a second person in the property at the time of the killing was "deeply affected by the incident" and they were being supported by specially trained officers.

Police at the scene yesterday Credit: ITV Meridian

Meanwhile the businessman's next-of-kin have asked for privacy at the "deeply traumatic time", police said.

Friends and acquaintances have paid tribute to Mr Hedger on social media:

It is understood Mr Hedger was marketing director at Avonbourne International and Business and Enterprise Trust, which runs colleges and a primary school in the Bournemouth area.

Prior to working for the academies he was marketing director at insurer Liverpool Victoria and had worked for Direct Line, it was reported.

Detective Chief Inspector Sarah Derbyshire said police do not believe the intruders were known to Mr Hedger, although all lines of inquiry are being pursued.

She said: "At this stage we are still trying to establish exactly what happened at the address in Castlewood and how and why the victim was shot dead.

"Currently we do not believe the offenders were known to the victim, however we continue to investigate all lines of inquiry.

"I am appealing for anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious in the area, or was in the area at that time, to contact Dorset Police as soon as possible.

Anyone with information should contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting incident number 30:53, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

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