Brian Jones: It Was Murder

Bryan Jones

Bryan Jones


Killing of the Rolling Stones guitarist was covered up by his minder, claims new book.


THE ROLLING STONES’ BRIAN JONES was killed by builders working at his house in East Sussex, who escaped the attentions of the police after the band’s minder, Tom Keylock, orchestrated a cover-up, claims a book published on the 45th anniversary of the guitarist’s death.

The updated edition of Brian Jones: Who Killed Christopher Robin? also links Jones’ death to the attempted murder three weeks later of Joan Fitzsimons, an alleged witness to the crime.

“There was a cover-up. It’s not a crackpot theory, it’s what happened.”

Terry Rawlings

“[Brian Jones] was definitely murdered and there was a cover-up,” asserts the book’s author Terry Rawlings in the new issue of MOJO, on sale in the UK on July 29. “It’s not a crackpot theory, it’s what happened.”

Mystery has always surrounded the death of the guitarist, who drowned in the swimming pool at his Cotchford Farm country home on July 2, 1969, a month after he was sacked from the Rolling Stones. Jones had become isolated from the other band members, drinking and drugging to excess.

Several of Rawlings’ revelations follow the death in July 2009 of Tom Keylock, the band’s driver/minder, who admitted to the author in a videotaped interview a year before he passed away that he was, indeed, present at Cotchford Farm at the time Jones died. Previously he’d maintained that he had left the property earlier that evening to collect a guitar for Keith Richards.

The book – the original 1994 edition of which first identified builder Frank Thorogood as the primary murder suspect – also sheds more light on who was at Jones’ home on the day he died, and how police failed to act on information that could have brought his alleged killers to justice.

Read more in Mojo interview with Terry Rawlings in the 250th Edition of MOJO magazine, out in the UK now.

PHOTO: Alamy

Brian Jones, The Rolling Stones & The Blues

Brian Jones

Brian Jones

The Stones’ lost soul in 15 classic clips…

45 YEARS AGO on Tuesday this week, Brian Jones – the man who first made the Stones roll – was found dead in his swimming pool at the age of 27.

He’s often remembered as a tragic figure who flew too close to the sun, but what about Brian Jones the musician and the blues devotee? The following 15 clips plot a path through the early years of the band and examine the scene that spawned them. Despite his gradual alienation from the Stones’ creative nexus, Jones played a pivotal role in that formative period, aligning the group with the American blues pioneers they considered their heroes. More than anything, these videos show just how fast The Rolling Stones were moving in those days.

Watch Alexis Komer – I Wanna Put a Tiger In Your Tank

As godfather of the British blues, Alexis Komer befriended the young Brain Jones. His band Blues Incorporated also provided a blueprint for aspiring musicians who’d begun to dig deeper into American music.

Brian Jones – Gone But Not Forgotten

Brian Jones – ‘A Story of Our Time’ BBC 1971

Uploaded on Oct 31, 2011

“A Story Of Our Time – Brian Jones The Rolling Stone” by Michael Wale.
BBC, 2nd March 1971:
– interview with Michael Aldred
– interview with Lewis Jones (BJ’s father)
– interview with Alexis Korner
– interview with Cliff Richard
– interview with Les Perrin
– interview with Mick Jagger

In August 2009 Mail Online announced “Police review Rolling Stone Brian Jones death after MoS reveals new evidence.” Here’s the report published by Mail Online on August 29, 2009.

Police are reviewing the death of Rolling Stone Brian Jones – 40 years after his body was found at the bottom of a swimming pool.

The dramatic move by Sussex Police follows new evidence unearthed by The Mail on Sunday about the mysterious death of the rock legend which suggests he was murdered by his minder.

Officially, Jones drowned, aged 27, in his pool at Cotchford Farm, Hartfield, East Sussex, on July 2, 1969, while under the influence of drink and drugs.

An inquest recorded a verdict of death by misadventure, even though the post-mortem report said there were no illegal drugs in the star’s body, just the equivalent of three-and-a-half pints of beer.

But now, a review officer based at Sussex Police CID headquarters has been assigned to trawl through 600 documents handed over by investigative journalist Scott Jones, who undertook a four-year probe into the guitarist’s death.

The new evidence was compiled by Mr Jones – no relation to the dead Stone – and disclosed by this newspaper last November.

The move follows a three-and-a-half-hour meeting Mr Jones had with senior Sussex police officers last month when they discussed testimony from witnesses at the house on the night Jones died.

Detectives are studying previously unseen files released by the Public Records Office and may launch a new investigation if they believe there is enough new evidence.

This marks a U-turn by Sussex Police, who until now have rejected requests to reopen the case.

Scott Jones said last night: ‘There is no time limit on the review. But after 40 years of mystery, anyone who values Brian’s reputation will be happy to wait for the outcome.’

Last November, we revealed fresh evidence from nurse Janet Lawson, who found Jones’s body. She said she saw his minder, Frank Thorogood, jump into the pool and ‘do something to Brian’. She was convinced he had killed Jones.

Thorogood died in 1994. Her claims are supported by PC Albert Evans, the first officer on the scene, who spoke to all the witnesses in the hours after Jones’s death and concluded he had died as a result of a fight with Thorogood.

New evidence also emerged about the original investigation by Detective Chief Inspector Bob Marshall, which shows that three unidentified witnesses were allowed to leave the scene without being interviewed.

Finally, police files have revealed how taxi driver Joan Fitzsimons, a former girlfriend of Thorogood, was attacked and left for dead three weeks after Brian Jones died. According to the official records, Ms Fitzsimons was planning to speak to the media about Jones’s death.

Thorogood was said to have been desperately searching for Ms Fitzsimons in the weeks before the attack because, the files reveal, she knew too much about the band. She died in 2002.