Police investigating the 1984 murder of a 45-year-old man in Barnet are seeking information regarding an assault that they suspect might be connected to the crime.
Anthony Littler, from Leslie Road, N2 was killed after leaving East Finchley tube station at around 12:15am on 1 May 1984. He was found with significant head injuries in an alleyway known as ‘The Causeway’ behind the station and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police believe Anthony was murdered in a random attack but despite an extensive investigation, the person or people responsible have never been identified. The motive for the murder also remains unknown.
As part of a regular review of the case, officers are now particularly keen to hear from a man they know was also the victim of a violent assault at the same location just two days before the fatal attack on Anthony.
A witness statement taken from a shopkeeper at the time suggests that on 29 April 1984, a man came into Galleon Wine Stores on High Road, N2, with severe facial injuries including a badly bruised black eye.
He told the shopkeeper he had been assaulted by two young people with a baseball bat outside of East Finchley tube station the previous evening.
The victim was never traced, but police believe he could hold key information to help progress their investigation. He was described as having short brown hair, of medium build and around 6ft.
Detective Chief Inspector Neil John, who is leading the investigation, said: “We understand that this murder took place almost 40 years ago and that people’s memories will have diminished over time.
“However, this witness statement suggests the man who came into the shop was subject to a particularly vicious attack. We believe that the victim would not have forgotten what is likely to have been a traumatic event in his life.
“If you think this may have been you, or you believe you know who was attacked or even who the attackers were, we would ask you to come forward and speak to us now.
“The length of time passed has not diminished our efforts to get justice for Anthony and his family. No piece of information will be considered too small.”
Police are also hoping to trace the person who made the original 999 call to police at the time of the murder. Detectives know the call was made from a public phone box near East Finchley station but the person did not leave their name or any other details and were never traced by police.
Anthony’s cousin Tricia McClure said: “Anthony was a lovely, kind and gentle man who wouldn’t have hurt anyone. It is heart-breaking to our family that this happened to him.
“After all this time, we hope this new investigation puts those responsible behind bars. It won’t bring Anthony back, but it will give us some closure.”
Anyone with information should contact 020 8358 0100 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.