Peter Miller murder: People of Great Yarmouth hold the key to solving cold case

Drains near the house where Peter Miller was found being searched in 1984

Drains near the house where Peter Miller was found being searched in 1984 - Credit: Archant

The detective leading the investigation into the killing of a Great Yarmouth man 28 years ago says local people hold the key to finding the murderer.

Peter Miller unsolved murder in December 1984 in Great Yarmouth.Number 10 Camden PlacePicture: James

Peter Miller unsolved murder in December 1984 in Great Yarmouth.Number 10 Camden PlacePicture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

Peter Miller, 24, was found dead in the kitchen of his home in Camden Place, off Blackfriars Road, on December 9, 1984. He had died as a result of a single stab wound to his chest.

Yarmouth man Peter was 24 when he was killed

Yarmouth man Peter was 24 when he was killed

The body was discovered at about 7.45pm by his brother Tony.

The last time he had been seen alive was earlier on that winter Sunday afternoon when he had helped a neighbour with household repairs.

Until recently the murder weapon had never been found but Detective Inspector Gary Bloomfield, senior investigating officer from the Norfolk and Suffolk Joint Major Investigation Team (MIT), has today issued a new appeal to people in Yarmouth over the murder.

He said: “I’m confident whoever killed Peter was from the Great Yarmouth area and somebody from that community will have knowledge or suspicions as to who the murderer is.

“I appeal directly to that person to unburden yourself and contact Norfolk police in confidence so Peter’s killer can be found.”

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He added: “People in Yarmouth still hold the key.

“The people of the Yarmouth area of the day, many of them are still there – a lot of communities from this time are less transient than they are now by and large. They are the ones who can unlock the mystery. His peers of the day will have some important information – I’m confident his peer group back in 1984 will have information that is yet to be known to the police and they are the people that I’m really appealing to, to come forward and speak to us.

“There will be people out there that have shouldered this burden for nearly 29 years thinking it will go away but it will never go away – it needs to be resolved for the family.”

The appeal, which comes as it emerged the inquiry has been bolstered by a new lead in that a weapon has been found in the town almost three decades after the murder, coincides with the launch of a new, unprecedented campaign - Norfolk Unsolved.

The campaign is being run in conjunction with the police between the Mercury and other Archant sister papers, including the EDP, to solve some of the force’s most serious cases.

It is hoped the unrivalled coverage, and in some cases the reward on offer, will help prompt those with vital clues to contact police so these crimes can finally be solved.

Det Insp Bloomfield said: “We had some significant information come into the Peter Miller inquiry last year which led us to review it, and part of that was around the potential location of the murder weapon.

“We conducted searches and we have recovered a weapon which was consistent with the intelligence which came in, and that is currently in the process of being forensically examined.”

It is believed the weapon was discarded around the time of the murder and had been missing until now.

The motive for the killing is still something which officers are working to establish as part of their ongoing inquiries, however there was no sign of a break-in and the doors were unlocked at the time of Peter’s death.

His brother Tony reported a strange smell in the air when he entered the home and a CS aerosol canister was found inside the house lying on the floor.

It is believed the canister had been used by either his murderer or Peter as he was being assaulted.

Despite investigations in 1984 and 1985 and a number of arrests, no-one was ever charged with the murder.

Several reviews failed to reveal further lines of inquiry until recently when fresh information was received and officers are now actively pursuing them.

Det Insp Bloomfield said he was in support of the Norfolk Unsolved campaign, which he hoped would generate even more leads for officers working on the case.

He said: “There’s a need for a conduit to exist between Norfolk police and the community and this partnership with Archant is an excellent initiative to get the message across in these unsolved cases.”

• Anyone who has information regarding Peter Miller’s death should contact the Joint Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.