Gloucestershire: Police Search For Second Body In Sian O’Callaghan Murder Hunt: UPDATED

26 Mar

Police continue searching a Gloucestershire field after a man suspected of killing Sian O’Callaghan allegedly pointed out where he previously dumped another victim.

Sian Murder: Hunt For Second Body Continues Play video
 

The location was provided by the 47-year-old man, who was arrested on suspicion of murdering Sian O’Callaghan after she left a Swindon nightclub last week.

Detective Superintendent Steve Fulcher said the person had gone missing “several years ago” as search teams sifted land at Baxter’s Farm, between the villages of Eastleach and Filkins.

Police have refused to comment on speculation the remains they are looking for could belong to 39-year-old Tina Pryer.

The mother-of-three was last seen getting in a taxi in Trowbridge in April 2001.

The suspect, named locally as taxi driver Christopher Halliwell, appeared before Swindon magistrates on Friday as officers were granted another 24 hours to quiz him.

The body of Miss O’Callaghan, 22, was recovered from an area near the village of Uffington, 15 miles east of Swindon on March 24.

She had been missing since leaving the Suju nightclub in the early hours of last Saturday.

A post-mortem examination is being carried out on the young woman’s body.

Det Supt Fulcher said he had been personally taken by the suspect to the location where Miss O’Callaghan’s body was found and where the search had begun for a second victim.

Officers were using mechanical diggers to excavate the corner of a field in the hunt and remove a section of dry-stone wall.

They had previously been searching near the famous “White Horse” chalk figure in rural Oxfordshire after arresting Mr Halliwell outside an Asda supermarket on Thursday.

Specialist dog teams have been helping the search after mobile phone technology pinpointed several areas of interest in 4,500-acre Savernake Forest.

Police seized a green taxi estate car which was seen early on Saturday when Miss O’Callaghan disappeared after leaving the Suju club.

She lived in a flat just half a mile away with her boyfriend Kevin Reape, 25.

She had sent a text message to her partner on the night of her disappearance, saying: “Where are you? x.”

Police revealed earlier this week that phone records put Miss O’Callaghan’s mobile somewhere in the forest 34 minutes after CCTV showed her leaving.

Officers refused to discuss reports they had been in contact with police in Somerset regarding the 1996 disappearance of Melanie Hall. Avon and Somerset police also had no comment.

Police said they would not speculate on the identity of the person they were looking for.

Miss O’Callaghan’s family have thanked members of the public who helped in the search for “our beautiful girl”.

:: Friends of Miss O’Callaghan have received approval from the Civil Aviation Authority to release hundreds of Chinese lanterns into the sky tonight in memory of her.

:: Investigators still wish to speak to anyone with information, and ask member of the public to contact Wiltshire Police on 0845 408 7000 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

NEWS UPDATE:

Police investigating the murder of missing PA Sian O’Callaghan have found human remains at a field they are searching in Gloucestershire, they said.

Sian police find human remains Enlarge photo

Sian Murder Probe: Human Remains Found

Sian: Police given extra time to quiz man

Detective Superintendent Steve Fulcher said the team from Wiltshire Police had been told they were those of a woman abducted in Swindon between 2003 and 2005. They have yet to be formally identified. He also revealed that an examination of 22-year-old Sian’s body revealed she had not been sexually assaulted.

Sian’s body was formally identified by her family on Friday night.

Supt Fulcher, speaking at a press conference in Swindon, said: “This morning officers have found remains which we believe to be human at the site at Eastleach.”

He also said that while the 47-year-old man being held in connection with the two murder investigations had told them when a victim was abducted, he gave no indication of an exact time and date, or her identity.

“He indicated he killed a young woman between 2003 and 2005. He could not be specific about the date but he said she had been taken from the Swindon area.”

Supt Fulcher also made a public appeal for anyone “lamping or poaching” in the area around Ramsbury, near Malborough, in the early hours of Saturday last week, hours after Sian disappeared, to contact police without fear of arrest over their illegal activities.

News that the remains of a second person had been found came hours after police were granted a further extension by magistrates in Swindon to hold the man being questioned.

They have until 3.15am on Monday to question him further, before they must either charge or release him. He was arrested on Thursday after police swooped on a taxi rank at an Asda supermarket in Swindon. A green Toyota Avensis with taxi markings was also taken from the scene.

Police have been digging on Baxter’s Farm, in the Gloucestershire Cotswolds 17 miles from where Sian’s body was discovered, since late on Thursday.

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