Two more arrests over Pendle Skips murder

Lancashire Police has announced that two people were arrested this morning (31 July) in connection with the investigation into the death of 49-year-old Stephen Whitehead (pictured).

A murder investigation was launched on Monday (27 July), after police were notified of the discovery of a body at Pendle Skips’ premises on Balderstone Close in Burnley.

Arrest after murder at Pendle Skips
Stephen Whitehead

Paramedics were called to the site by Pendle Skips employees on Monday morning, after they found the body of ‘casual employee’ Stephen Whitehead in the kitchen.

The ambulance service pronounced the man dead at the scene and a post mortem examination later found that Whitehead had died as a result of ‘extensive head injuries’. It is thought that the injuries were caused by a weapon.

As such, the police launched a murder investigation on Monday and arrested a 34-year-old man on suspicion of murder on Wednesday (29 July). After being taken into custody for questioning, however, the man was released without charge.

This morning, police stated that they have now arrested a 20-year-old man from Burnley on suspicion of murder, along with a 16-year-old girl from Padiham on suspicion of assisting an offender. They are both currently in custody.

No further details have yet been released. However, the Lancashire Telegraph has reported that police are now following several lines of inquiry, and think Whitehead may have been sleeping at the premises and was killed after disturbing thieves who have been targeting the industrial estate for diesel and other commodities in recent weeks.

Detective Superintendent Paul Withers of the Force Major Investigation Team (FMIT) said: “We have a large team of detectives dedicated to this investigation and finding out exactly how Stephen Whitehead came about these injuries and the circumstances which led to his death.”

Anyone with any information is asked to call the police on 101 quoting log 182 of 27 July, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at

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