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07th Aug 2018

Murder investigation launched after 7-year-old boy dies in South London house fire

Wil Jones

Joel Urhie died in the early hours of Tuesday

Police have launched a murder investigation after a seven-year-old boy dies in a house fire in South London.

Joel Urhie was found in the early hours of Tuesday, at his home on Adolphus Street, Deptford, south-east London. Police described it as a “very severe fire”.

Emergency services were called to the address at 3.30am, and it took 75 minutes to get the blaze under control.

Joel’s mother Sophie and his sister Sarah escaped the fire, and are recovering in hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

Police believe the fire was deliberate, but it is unlikely that Joel was the target.

Det Supt Jane Corrigan said: “It is difficult to imagine a seven-year-old is the motive for the attack,” she said.

“[He] has lost his life in what should have been the safest place for him, his home,” she added.

“We believe that the fire was started deliberately but at this stage I am unable to go into any further detail due to operational reasons.”