A man has died after he was knifed in the back in Essex, where police have launched a murder investigation.
Paramedics were called to the scene next to Colchester Castle this morning following the fatal stabbing.
They called for police back-up and a murder enquiry was launched. Essex Police have said their investigation is currently at 'an early stage' but confirmed the dead man had suffered a stab wound to his back.
It came hours a 40-year-old man was also stabbed in the back just yards away in George Street, although his wounds were not life threatening.
Essex Police has confirmed it is investigating whether the incidents were linked but has not found any evidence connecting the attacks so far.
Police are pictured at the scene of the victim's death near Colchester Castle and officers have launched a murder investigation
Paramedics called for police back-up at about 8.20am but it is not yet known at what time the man was attacked and died.
Police are still at the scene of the stabbing where officers are standing guard at the cordon, which runs directly beside the town's Methodist church. Forensics officers are combing the town centre scene.
Locals say they saw the victim, who was wearing a heavy coat, lying on the street and thought he was a homeless man.
It was only when they tried to wake him that they realised what had happened.
They say the historic Dutch Quarter has been blighted by break-ins and drug taking as more people are forced onto the streets.
Grandmother Claire McLeod,48, said: 'I saw this man on the floor when I went out and I thought he was sleeping.
'I was taking my grandchildren to school, I can't believe