Death of a child killer: Vigilante neighbors went through man's mail, used Google to uncover past before murdering him

The man's body was discovered with severe head on August 4 in the apartment he rented out in New Tredegar which is only 11 miles from where he had killed the toddler

                            Death of a child killer: Vigilante neighbors went through man's mail, used Google to uncover past before murdering him
(Source:Getty Images)

Three men have been charged on Wednesday for the murder of child killer David Gaut after the authorities found him beaten to death in his house in New Tredegar. It is believed that Gaut's neighbors were upset about having a child killer among them after finding out about his violent past. Gaut was released from prison in November after serving a life sentence for the gruesome murder of 17-month-old Chi Ming Shek 33 years ago in South Wales.

On August 4, 54-year-old Gaut's body was discovered with severe head and facial injuries in the apartment he rented out in New Tredegar which is only 11 miles from where he had killed the toddler in Caerphilly. The three men who were charged have been identified as 47-year-old Darren Evesham, 51-year-old David Osbourne, and 23-year-old Ieuan Harley from the New Tredegar area.

Jane Pickthall, the toddler's mother, was shocked by the news that her child's killer had been murdered. She told the Daily Mail that she had no idea Gaut had been killed but did not speak of the incident with the publication any further. Gaut had been released from jail in November and he had been staying in last month at New Tredegar. The locals who lived in the same area as him were able to find out about what he had done in the past by using Google.

One of the neighbors said: "He was given a good beating. Some people are saying he should have the same treatment he gave to that baby. An eye for an eye." Gaut had told his new neighbors that he had served 33 years in jail because he killed a soldier when actually he had been babysitting for his girlfriend of the time during which time he beat up, kicked, and burned the sole of the child before dumping the body under a chest of drawers in the house.

Gaut even had sexual intercourse with the mother after he brutally murdered her son and it wasn't until the next morning when she discovered the battered body of her son. She found Chi with a broken arm, torn liver, and a fractured skull as well.

It was revealed on August 9 that Gaut had been released from his prison sentence in November last year and that he may have switched houses three times before landing in the house where he was ultimately killed.

He had told the locals in the area that he had served 33 years for shooting dead a soldier and that he had been the victim of the law. Unfortunately for Gaut, the locals took a deep dive into his history by using Google and found out exactly what he had done. The police found him dead with major facial and head injuries in his apartment. The villagers are reportedly angry that he had been housed in an apartment in the community. The also started to suspect him when he kept boasting about serving time.

One unnamed local said: "We got to know him quite well since he'd moved in. He used to go on about how he had been in prison for 33 years. He bragged about it. He told us he had shot a soldier but he told us he had been set up. We were in his flat and saw his middle name was Tracy on the letters he had. We thought that was unusual so I googled him to see if I could find out what he had done. That's when we saw the details of what he did to the baby boy. We couldn't believe it. It's disgusting. I can't believe we have been living (near) that. Apparently, he's been moved three times since he's been out if prison. Word got out then about what he had done."

Another local said: "He then said he had shot someone a long time ago but we knew that wasn't true. Everyone knew he killed a baby and everyone was talking about it." 

The neighbors have said that the authorities had been scouring the area and looking inside all the bins and the forensic officers have been photographing the lawn that is located outside his home at the same time. The investigators are also searching the river that is located behind the properties.

One person said: "They've been looking everywhere. There was a burnt out car that they were looking at. They've been in our bins and looked in the river as well." Another local, who claims she had spoken to Gaut without being fully aware of all his crimes, said: "I helped to move his TV into his house. He's only been here a matter of weeks. He told me that had served 33 years but said he didn't do it. I didn't ask questions. I was away when it happened so I didn't hear anything but I'm not surprised.

"You don't know who is moving into this street anymore. I didn't have much to do with him but I spoke to him from time to time. The police have been combing all the grass so it looks like they are looking for a murder weapon. I've lived [nearby] for years and it used to be great. We used to have lovely street parties. It's all changed now." 

The Ministry of Justice revealed that there was some amount of risk assessment done before Gaut had moved into the apartment he died in last month. A spokesperson for the Prison and Probation Service said: "Thorough risk assessments are carried out before deciding on accommodation for offenders released on licence. There is an ongoing police investigation, so it would be inappropriate to comment further."

The neighbors had spoken of how shocked they were and some of them even said that they did not feel comfortable in the area. Some of them were "convinced" that the victim of the brutal beating as the convicted child killer. One unnamed neighbor said: "It used to be just old age pensioners and disabled people but about two months ago they started to move in other people. I don't feel safe to stay here. I'd like to move unless they do something about it. We have a school at the end of the road - 100 yards away."

The three suspects were expected to appear at the Newport Magistrates' Court on August 9. A spokesperson for the police said: "The cause of death has yet to be established and will be determined following a post-mortem examination. Anyone with information should call Gwent Police."