Oxford Prof Found Dead
An Oxford Professor was found dead earlier this week, amid suspicions of murder.
An Oxford professor was found dead at a house in a village just outside the city earlier this week.
At first there were suspicions that Prof Steven Rawlings, a fellow at St Peter’s College, was murdered. Dr Devinder Sivia, a St John’s (Oxford) tutor was arrested in connection with the event.
Thames Valley Police have since confirmed that there will not be a murder enquiry and Dr Sivia has been granted bail.
Prof Steven Rawlings, 50, a fellow and tutor in physics at St Peter’s College, was pronounced dead late on Wednesday evening after the emergency services were called to a bungalow in Southmoor, outside Oxford.
Rawlings’ wife told the press that she did not believe her husband was murdered, calling his death “a tragic accident.” She added that Prof Rawlings and Dr Sivia, who wrote Foundations of Science Mathematics together in 1999 and conducted joint research, had “were best friends since college.”
The cause of death has yet to be determined, but it is hoped that further tests will help explain what really happened. Police are not looking for any other suspects.
Thames Valley Police said “We are liaising closely with Oxford University and it is apparent that he was well-respected and liked within the college, and colleagues and students have been devastated by the news.”
The master of St Peter’s described Rawlings as a “much liked and admired tutor and colleague.” Rawlings, who had a PhD from Cambridge, had been a professor since 1994 and was head of astrophysics at Oxford between 2006 and 2010.
Roger Davies, the current head of Rawlings’ old department, described his predecessor as a “world-leading astrophysicist” and said that “the impact of his death is going to be felt very widely.”