Capital mews death ‘down to natural causes’

Police were called to Jamaica Mews yesterday morning
Police were called to Jamaica Mews yesterday morning
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Detectives investigating the death of a man whose body was found in a New Town housing complex have concluded that he died of natural causes.

Officers and forensic teams mounted a major operation after the body of the 37-year-old was found in a modern housing complex at Jamaica Mews.

Local residents spoke of drama on Tuesday evening into Wednesday morning as police used a cherry picker to scour the roof of the three-storey, 1980s building and conducted door-to-door inquiries throughout the night.

Although officers are now satisfied there are no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death, residents have spoken of “constant” antisocial behaviour, violence and drug dealing in the housing association complex.

They said police are called to the new-build mews – just yards from exclusive apartments, townhouses and offices – almost every day.

Jamaica Mews, built in 1981, comprises blocks joined by three large courtyards, tucked away behind high New Town tenements.

Neighbours of the dead man, who has not been named, said he had been left “bloodied and bruised” after an incident several weeks ago stemming from a dispute with a man on his stair. The other 35-year-old man was later charged with assault.

Local resident Ian Horsburgh was among those who spoke of the violence. He said: “He had a fight about two weeks ago. He was black and blue after this fight.”

He added: “The police are round here all the time, there’s drink and drugs, a lot of trouble.”

Another elderly and disabled resident, who asked not to be named, said: “There’s all sorts of trouble going on round here, alcoholics, drug dealers, it’s hard for my friends to understand because of where we are, right next to India Street.”

“People have no idea how bad it is here. It’s a bit of an eye opener the first time you come here.”

Another local resident said she had been trying to move for some time.

She said: “I’ve lived here since 1996 and it used to be absolutely lovely. But it changed and the police are just here all the time.”

A police spokesman said: “Lothian and Borders Police can now confirm that the death of a 37-year-old man found within a flat in Jamaica Mews is being treated as non-suspicious.

“Officers carried out a full investigation in and around the Stockbridge area while forensic tests were carried out to determine the full circumstances surrounding this incident.

“It has now been established that natural causes were responsible for the man’s death.”