A manhunt is under way after a former Royal Navy officer was killed by burglars who ran him over in his own car.
Mike Samwell, 35, died after going to confront intruders who broke into his home as he slept upstairs with his wife Jessica at 3am on Sunday.
He was found badly injured in a parking area at the rear of the house in the Chorlton area of Manchester and died little more than an hour later in hospital.
Greater Manchester Police believe he was run over at least once as he tried to prevent the intruder or intruders from making off with his black Audi S3 sports coupe.
Detective Superintendent Jon Chadwick said that he went downstairs after the couple heard noises coming from the ground floor.
He said: “This is the murder of an innocent man who has merely sought to protect his property from criminals.
“We will not stop until we have found the person responsible for this dreadful crime.”
Mr Samwell’s car was later found badly damaged and abandoned three miles away in Whitby Avenue in the Ladybarn area of the city.
His killer or killers remain on the run and a murder investigation is under way.
Mrs Samwell had been left “devastated” and was being comforted by her family, Mr Chadwick said.
He said that they knew Mr Samwell went downstairs after being alerted by noises and ended up out the back of the house where he was hit by the car.
Cranbourne Road, where the crime took place, was cordoned off on Sunday afternoon as forensics officers combed the scene for clues.
Mr Chadwick appealed for witnesses and urged the “criminal fraternity” to help find Mr Samwell’s killer or killers.
He added: “It’s a nice, quiet, leafy place. Anything happening at 3am would stand out a mile.
“It is one of those things where you would expect the criminal fraternity to help us out with. It’s more than criminal.”