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Woman's body found in doorway next to La Trompette

Flowers and a candle let in the doorway
Flowers and a candle let in the doorway


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September 17, 2023

The discovery of the body of a woman in a shop doorway in Chiswick has sent a shockwave through the community.

Local business owners and passersby became concerned when the woman, named locally as Rachel, could not be woken by her friend early on Monday morning (11 September).

The emergency services were called and she was pronounced dead at the scene. Flowers and a candle have been left at the location by local people.

It is believed she had overdosed on heroin and drug paraphernalia could be seen at the scene of her death at the entrance to the former premises of the barbers Genco next to the Michelin-starred La Trompette restaurant.

‘Rachel’ who is believed to have a son, had been frequenting the area for some time and it is speculated that she acquired the fatal dose from dealers operating in the area.

A manager of a business owner who asked not to be named said, “I’d be lying if I said that the presence of drug users on the street doesn’t make me angry and annoyed and the first thing you think of is loss of revenue. However, when something like this happens it does bring home to you that there is a human tragedy behind each of their stories.

“The problem has been endemic for years but appears to go in cycles and right now it is particularly bad as I think a new group of dealers are operating in the area. The police have been excellent, and we know the challenges they face but I do worry that overblown concerns about shoplifting have meant that a symptom of the problem was being dealt with, not the cause.”

The police say that they have arrested a woman with addiction issues who they believe has personally been responsible for a significant amount of the increase in theft on Chiswick High Road over the summer. It was the third time she was detained but, on this occasion, she received a custodial sentence of 20 weeks.

Local councillor Jo Biddolph said in her regular report on, “Rachel’s death, and the arrest of Chiswick’s most prolific shoplifter (also a drug addict in need of support, which will be offered while she is in custody), have focused our local police on tackling drug dealing. Our area sergeant was candid when speaking to shop owners at a private meeting earlier this month and every shop owner had a tale to tell. It was clear that people who work in our shops have an extraordinary window on our world, seeing what we don’t necessarily notice when looking into theirs. So do residents. Many people have pieces of a bigger jigsaw but assume that everyone including the police have the same pieces. It isn’t necessarily so. If you have observations, experiences, descriptions or know of an alley, area, corner, house, road where dealing or other criminal activities are taking place, please pass it on. Doorbell video and CCTV images have been very helpful so please provide them if you have them. Please tell the police or, if you prefer, your local councillors who will inform our area police team. Don’t expect instant action such as an immediate arrest of someone you believe is a drug dealer. The police need a rock-solid case and it takes time to build it.”

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