Matthew Goddard murder: Man in Belfast found dead in violent Christmas Eve attack

PSNI have launched a murder investigation and arrested two people in connection with case

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The Independent Online

Two people have been arrested in connection with the death of Matthew Goddard, who was found dead in his home in Belfast after what police have described as a “brutal and violent attack” on Christmas Eve.

Mr Goddard, 41, was found in the living room of his home in Chobham Street, East Belfast, at around 9.40pm on 24 December. He was last seen at around 6pm the day before.

Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI) is investigating a number of lines of inquiry, one of them drug related, and have launched a murder enquiry following the results of the post mortem examination.

Police are not disclosing the exact cause of death at this stage, but believe Mr Goddard may have been attacked with his electric guitar during the brutal assault.

A 21-year-old man and a 24-year-old woman were arrested in East Belfast on Saturday in connection with the murder and were taken to Musgrave Police Station for questioning. 

Senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector John McVea said: “Mr Goddard suffered a brutal and violent attack in the living room of his home – a place where he should have felt safe.

“We believe he may have been involved in drugs and this is one of a number of lines of inquiry police are investigating. At this stage we do not know the reason Mr Goddard was attacked, but this type of viscous behaviour has no place in society.

“One of Mr Goddard’s hobbies was playing a guitar and we believe his electric guitar was used at some stage during the attack however we are not prepared to disclose the exact cause of death at this stage.”

Police have appealed to anyone who was in the area between teatime on 23 December and and 9.40pm on Christmas Eve.

Mr Goddard is survived by his mother, father, and half-brother.