Murder investigation launched after body of man found during dog burglary incident

Officers were responding to reports of a labradoodle being stolen - and found the body of Donald 'Prentice' Patience.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 25th August 2023

Greater Manchester Police have discovered the body of a man in Bury while officers were responding to reports of a dog burglary.

The force has launched a formal murder investigation following the incident, with a home office post-mortem examination concluding that the man’s death is suspicious.

He has been named as 45-year-old Donald ‘Prentice’ Patience.

GMP were first called to an address on Ainsworth Road in Radcliffe at around 10.30am on Tuesday 22 August, to reports of a white labradoodle dog being taken in a burglary.

But upon searching the property, they discovered Donald and declared him dead at the scene.


Donald’s loved ones described him as “a much-loved son, brother and father and will be sorely missed by many, affectionately known as Prentice.”

Donald’s family are receiving support from family liaison officers at this difficult time and the dog is being looked after by the relevant authority.


Three men have been arrested on suspicion of murder since enquiries began. Two men, aged 27 and 41, have been bailed pending further enquires, whilst a 39-year-old man remains in police custody.

Officers are now appealing to the public for any information that can help with their enquiries.

Detective Chief Inspector Rachel Smith of GMP’s Major Incident Team said: “First, as a force, we would like to pass on our condolences to Donald’s loved ones at this extremely distressing time, we are doing all we can to get the answers they deserve and find out what has happened.


“Since we were made aware of this incident earlier this week our investigation has been swift and precise, with three arrested because of our enquiries with one at the scene at the time of the suspected burglary.

“I would like to reassure the local public, as I understand there will be alarm when finding out about this, but we are confident it is a targeted attack.

“We now want to appeal to the local community for any eyewitness accounts or footage of any activity that we may be able to link to this investigation.

“We are also looking for people who may know Donald, have seen him walking his beloved white labradoodle in the local area or have any knowledge of any activity at or near his address, which is an end terrace on Ainsworth Road, since Friday 18 August 2023.

“It is crucial we have as much detail as possible to help piece together what has happened in this tragic incident where someone has sadly lost their life.


“We are keeping all available lines of enquiry open but no matter how small, your piece of information may be that crucial bit of evidence we need that can help us with this investigation.”

If anyone has any information or specific detail regarding the incident or Donald, they are asked to contact GMP’s Major Incident Team direct on 0161 856 3635 or 101 quoting incident number 1139 of 22/08/2023 or via the independent charity – Crimestoppers – on 0800 555 111.

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Featured image: GMP