James Nash: Murder investigation launched after children's author is shot dead in Hampshire

A murder investigation has been launched after a ‘kind-hearted’ children's author and parish councillor was shot during a daytime attack at his home.

Sunday, 9th August 2020, 9:51 am
Updated Sunday, 9th August 2020, 10:10 am

Detectives continue to investigate the shooting of James Nash, whose suspected attacker died in a police chase after trying to flee on a motorcycle.

The 42-year-old victim suffered serious head injuries in the attack in the leafy Hampshire village of Upper Enham on Wednesday afternoon.

Posting on Facebook, Test Valley Borough Council leader Phil North said: ‘This is such devastating news, not just for his family and friends who will obviously miss him terribly, but for the whole community of Enham Alamein where he was a public representative.

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The shooting took place on Wednesday

‘He was such a kind-hearted individual and a proactive parish councillor who cared deeply for his community.’

Mr Nash served as the vice chairman of Enham Alamein Parish Council, and a 40-year-old woman was also assaulted during the incident and suffered minor injuries, said Hampshire police.

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On Friday Mr North sought to reassure residents of the area, telling them officers were ‘confident’ that the deceased rider, 34, was the attacker involved in the ‘horrific shooting’.

Police have said, that while investigations are at an early stage, they ‘do not believe there are any outstanding suspects in this investigation’.

The suspect - named in reports as Alex Sartain - is believed to have initially fled the scene on foot before trying to get away on a motorbike, but then he fatally crashed on an A-road about three miles away from the shooting site after officers gave chase.

He died at the scene and his next of kin have been notified as formal identification takes place, said the force.

A Hampshire Constabulary spokesperson said the death was now being treated as a murder investigation.

The statement said: ‘Enquiries to establish the circumstances of what took place are ongoing.

‘Anyone with information should call police on 101, quoting Op Plaque.’

The force has made a mandatory referral to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

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