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Deaths of police officer and three-year-old son being treated as suspected murder-suicide

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The deaths of a West Mercia police officer and his three-year-old son are being treated as a suspected murder-suicide.

David Louden, 39, and Harrison Louden were found dead at an address in Cairndhu Drive in Kidderminster last Friday.

Officers attended the house in Worcestershire following concerns about the welfare of a man and young child.

Police were called to an address in Cairndhu Drive in Kidderminster
Image: Police were called to an address in Cairndhu Drive in Kidderminster

Their deaths were originally treated as unexplained and an investigation began into their circumstances.

After post-mortems were conducted, West Mercia Police said they it is now satisfied that no one else was involved.

“We, West Mercia Police, are now treating the death of Harrison as a suspected murder and the death of David as a suspected suicide,” said Assistant Chief Constable Damian Barratt.

He said safeguarding reviews are now under way and there will be an inquest to provide an “official determination”.

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“This is a dreadfully sad case and our thoughts are with David and Harrison’s family and friends,” he said.

Police previously said Mr Louden’s family had “expressed their deep shock, grief and devastation at the loss of these two much loved family members”.

In a statement issued through the force, the family said: “David was a kind, loving, considerate, amazing father, husband, son, brother, uncle, friend and colleague.

“Harrison was a happy, well-loved little boy. They will both be forever missed and loved.”

The West Midlands Ambulance Service was called to reports of a medical emergency at the property at 9.21am on Friday morning.

Two ambulances and a paramedic officer attended the scene.

West Midlands ambulance service said they were called to reports of a medical emergency at the property
Image: West Midlands Ambulance Service said it was called to reports of a medical emergency at the property

“On arrival, we discovered two patients, a man and a young child,” the service said.

“Sadly, it quickly became apparent that neither patient could be saved and they were confirmed dead at the scene.”

Neighbours spoke of their “shock” at the deaths, with one, who asked not to be named, saying the residents “kept to themselves”.

“They’ve lived there less than a year,” they added. “It’s a family. The news is just awful.”