Family’s tribute to ‘inseparable’ victims of Epsom College shooting

Epsom College: Police cordon after family found dead

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The family of Emma and Lettie Pattison have paid tribute to the “inseparable” pair who were both found dead at their house in the grounds of Epsom College in Surrey in the early hours of February 5. Police believe that George Pattison, Emma’s husband and Lettie’s father, shot them both before turning the gun on himself.

In a statement, which was issued through Surrey Police, the relatives of seven-year-old Lettie and her 45-year-old mother, said: “We, the family of Emma and Lettie, would like to express our deepest, heartfelt thanks for the overwhelming support we have received over the past 11 days.

“Thank you to the immeasurable number of people and institutions who have written messages, sent flowers, paid tributes, held vigils, or otherwise taken time to remember Emma and Lettie.

“We would like to thank Surrey Police for their sensitive and thorough handling of the on-going investigation into this horrendous tragedy and to the Epsom College Community, Croydon High and Danes Hill schools for their invaluable support.”

They added: “Thank you also to the media who have, largely, respected our privacy at this difficult time: we ask that they continue to do so.

“To see the esteem in which Emma is held by all who knew her is an enormous comfort.

“She was everything one could hope for in a daughter, sister, mother, wife, friend, teacher and so much more.

“We are an extremely close family and family was at the centre of Emma and Lettie’s universe.”

The statement went on to say: “The Epsom College community had become part of that universe for them both.

“Seven-year-old Lettie was Emma’s pride and joy: an adorable, vibrant little girl with a compelling curiosity, a heart-melting smile and an intellect beyond her years.

“The two of them were inseparable and we take comfort in that they will remain so.

“Emma had a warm, welcoming smile and sparkling, blue eyes, full of optimism. Over the last eleven days we’ve noticed the sky has been bright blue, with at times a warm glow of pink.”

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Mr Pattison had been in touch with Surrey Police three days before the killing to discuss his gun licence. 

He asked to change his address after the family moved to the school site from Caterham.

After the “double-murder suicide”, the police force referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) because of its contact with him.

The mandatory referral was looked into by the IOPC which concluded last Friday no further investigation was required into the force’s conduct.

It added that the “matter should be returned to the force to handle as it deems appropriate”.

It said: “We have reminded the force of its obligations, and that if evidence were to come to light that anyone serving with the police may have breached standards of professional behaviour or committed a criminal offence in connection with this, they should refer relevant matters to us.”

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