Thousands of pounds have been donated to a fund for the pensioner who is on bail for killing an intruder in his house.
Richard Osborn-Brooks, 78, was bailed on Thursday after he allegedly stabbed Henry Vincent, one of two burglars who had broken into his home.
“I can’t begin to imagine what he must be feeling right now having gone through this and how worried he must be about his wife whilst being held in custody,” wrote the page’s founder, Gemma Sergeant.
She said she did not know Osborn-Brooks personally but had grown up in the area and her parents still lived there.
“His story hit a nerve with me as I have been burgled myself (thankfully I was out) and in recent months I have known two families who have been targeted locally,” she said.
“The spate of burglaries in the area is becoming a concern for many.”
The initial target was £3,000 when the campaign launched on Thursday. The money was raised in small donations from 247 people.
Sergeant said she would give Osborn-Brooks the money even if he was not ultimately charged.
Meanwhile, the victim of an earlier burglary in Farmingham, Kent, that Vincent was being sought for, has said of his death: “Good riddance.”
Cyril Goodearl, 78, told the Evening Standard of his anger after having heirlooms stolen from his home in November.
“I found out it was the same bloke yesterday and I thought it’s a jolly good job, he said, adding: “At least we are not keeping him in prison for the rest of his life. Good riddance.”
Detectives have renewed their appeal for information about the incident and particularly want to speak to a second burglary suspect who fled the scene.
Osborn-Brooks found two men inside his home and Vincent sustained a stab wound to the upper body during a struggle. He was found collapsed and taken to hospital, but pronounced dead at 3.37am.
Osborn-Brooks, who suffered bruising to his arms, was arrested on suspicion of murder but has since been bailed pending further inquiries until May.