Crime not ruled out in mystery Melrose fire death

Site of caravan fire in Tweedmount Road, Melrose 13/08/13.
Site of caravan fire in Tweedmount Road, Melrose 13/08/13.

Eighteen days after a man was found dead in a blazing caravan, detectives have admitted they still don’t know if they are dealing with a crime or an accident.

Firefighters found David Ogg’s body in the van which was parked in the driveway of a detached house in Tweedmount Road in Melrose on the night of Saturday, July 27.

Forensic teams combed the scene and the caravan was only removed last week. Officers continue to guard the property which is surrounded by police tape.

Police are remaining tight-lipped. Attempts by The Southern to talk with detectives leading the investigation have not succeeded.

Yesterday a Police Scotland spokesman in Edinburgh told us: “The circumstances surrounding the man’s death continue to be investigated and at this time the cause of the fire remains unexplained. It would be inappropriate for us to comment further at this time.”

Mr Ogg, 63, lived at the house with his partner, Anna. They were well known to the police who were regular visitors to the home. It is known that both have criminal records.

Earlier this year Anna’s son Richard returned to Melrose from the United States and began living at the Tweedmount Road home. There was no sign of mother or son yesterday and neighbours say they don’t know where they are living.

One neighbour, who asked not to be named, told us: “David and Anna were not satisfactory types of neighbours. The police were regular 
visitors, although for a while that has been less frequent.”

And she added: “We have learned over the years to 
completely ignore them unless they were at close quarters.”

Neighbours said the couple were known to be heavy drinkers.

We were told: “As far as David was concerned you had to agree with him or he would just shout at you.

“He believed he had the right to walk into your garden.

“The street learned to keep him at arm’s length. It was like neighbours from hell.

“Richard arrived back earlier this year but I don’t think Richard and David got on very well.

“I really want to see all this ended. It is time we had a conclusion.”

Another neighbour who was one of those to raise the alarm said she didn’t know Mr Ogg was living in the caravan.

She told us: “He liked a drink but was friendly. He said hello, but we kept ourselves to ourselves.”

Specialised fire investigators from Edinburgh have been working with police to try and determine the cause of the fire.