A BUSINESSMAN has been named as the victim of suspected stabbing in Bridgwater on Thursday (June 21).

Mike Bithrey, 72, landlord of properties at Escott Court, died after being airlifted to Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton, following an ‘altercation’ at around 11am.

The former town councillor from Honiton is a well-known businessman in East Devon and landlord of the property where the incident took place.

The married father-of-four and grandfather owns Bithrey Holdings, based in Bithrey House, King Street, Honiton.

Following the incident police cordoned off an area around Escott Court, Chilton Street, which consists of 13 flats.

Forensics remained at the scene on Friday and a tarpaulin is covering several vehicles.

One resident told the Mercury: "I had just stepped out for a cigarette when I saw police cars and ambulances everywhere. There was a guy who was covered in blood being put into an ambulance. It was like all hell had broken loose.

“Police asked if I heard anything – gunshots – but I didn’t. There have been police, ambulances, forensics and CID here. I don’t know what’s going on."

Dan Tottle, who lives nearby, said: “I heard a loud noise and saw ornaments shaking in my home. I then saw the helicopter fly in and a man was taken away on a stretcher.”

A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Police said: "Police were called to reports of an altercation in the Chilton Street area of Bridgwater at about 10.50am.

"The area was been cordoned off pending an examination by crime scene investigators."

A man understood to be in his 80s has been arrested in connection with the incident.

Anyone with information on the incident should call police on 101.

Did you see what happened? Contact our newsroom on 01278-727960.