Marelle Sturrock's unborn baby did not survive cops confirm as murder squad detectives hunt fiance

27 April 2023, 18:51

The unborn child did not survive, police confirmed
The unborn child did not survive, police confirmed. Picture: Social media/LBC

By Will Taylor

The unborn baby of of 29-week pregnant teacher Marelle Sturrock did not survive, cops investigating her death have confirmed - as they launch a murder probe and hunt her missing fiance.

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David Yates, 36, was being treated as a missing person after his partner Marelle, 35, was discovered dead in a Glasgow flat they shared together.

In a statement, Detective Superintendent Nicola Kilbane said: "A murder investigation is ongoing in relation to the death of Marelle Sturrock, 35, at Jura Street in Glasgow.

"Officers attended her home address shortly after 8.40am on Tuesday, 25 April and she was pronounced dead at the scene. Marelle was 29 weeks pregnant and I can confirm that sadly her unborn baby did not survive.

"Her partner David Yates is wanted in connection with Marelle's death. At this time we have no information to suggest anyone else has been involved."

Tributes including children's toys were left at the flat
Tributes including children's toys were left at the flat. Picture: LBC
Notes were left to the teacher
Notes were left to the teacher. Picture: LBC

Tributes including flower bouquets, teddy bears and messages from pupils at her were left outside Marelle's home.

One note, written in children's handwriting, said: "Thank you for everything you've done for me."

"I will miss you loads," said another, saying it was from a pupil at Sandwood Primary, where Marelle taught.

Police said Mr Yates' vehicle, a white Seat Ateca was found at Murdock Country Park on Tuesday. They have continued to search the area for Ms Sturrock's partner since.

He was last seen on Sunday evening shortly after 8pm and is believed to still be in the area.

"There is not believed to be any risk to the wider public. However, I would urge anyone with information or concerns to contact Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident 0904 of 25 April or speak to any of our officers," Supt Kilbane added.

Police have been searching woodland and a reservoir for the missing fiancé of a heavily pregnant teacher.

Read more: Manhunt for fiancé of heavily-pregnant teacher Marelle Sturrock, 35, after her body was found in Glasgow flat

Read more: Heartbreaking final photo of heavily-pregnant teacher Marelle Sturrock, 35, found dead at home as police hunt begins

Police continue to search Mugdock Country Park, East Dunbartonshire, for the fiancé of pregnant teacher Marelle Sturrock
Police continue to search Mugdock Country Park, East Dunbartonshire, for the fiancé of pregnant teacher Marelle Sturrock. Picture: Alamy

Ms Sturrock was discovered at her home in the Craigton area of the city after police received a "concern for person" call, Police Scotland said.

The force launched an investigation, confirming that her death is being treated as suspicious.

Read More: 'Treasure that photo!': Marelle Sturrock's sister shares poignant bridesmaid picture as fiancé manhunt continues

Read More: Watch budding singer Marelle Sturrock's heart-rending performance of 9 Crimes, as pregnant teacher found dead at home

Marelle Sturrock and her partner David Yates
Marelle Sturrock and her partner David Yates. Picture: Facebook

Officers have sealed off parts of Mugdock Country Park in Milngavie, which is around nine miles away, as they searched for Mr Yates.

It is understood that the couple lived together.

Police search Mugdock Country park near Glasgow for dead woman's fiance

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Marelle, from Wick, Caithness, worked as a school teacher at Sandwood Primary and had moved to the city as an aspiring actress and singer.

Mr Yates is also a budding actor, according to his online profile, where he lists experience in local theatre through school and university.

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Listen to LBC on Global Player: Podcasts, news and radio highlights. Picture: Global Player

One of the last productions he starred in was 'Dr. Morrison film' in 2013, according to his profile. He also appeared in Rapunzel's Prince in Glasgow.

David Yates is a missing person
David Yates is a missing person. Picture: Facebook

He was also a member of the Glasgow-based heavy metal band Nocturne Wulf, but quit in September 2020 after lockdown to "focus on family and his own self".

In a video posted to social media, Mr Yates said he wasn't committed to the band and wanted different things, such as a puppy and a family.

Marelle's friends had shared a photo on Facebook of her looking happy at a meal, smiling with her pals, just hours before she was found dead.

Friends shared this image shut hours before she was found dead
Friends shared this image shut hours before she was found dead. Picture: Facebook
Marelle Sturrock who was found dead in her home
Marelle Sturrock who was found dead in her home. Picture: social media

"It is with deep sorrow that I must inform you about the sudden death of Ms Sturrock who is a beloved member of our teaching staff," her school said.

"I know that this will come as a shock to our school community, and we will do all that we can to support children, staff and families through what will be a difficult and challenging time.

"I hope that you will understand that there are no other details that I can share at this time but wanted to let our families know the tragic news from the school."

Marelle Sturrock posing for a photo with her partner David
Marelle Sturrock posing for a photo with her partner David. Picture: social media

Detective Chief Inspector Cheryl Kelly said: “We were made aware of concern for a woman at a property on Jura Street in Glasgow shortly after 8.40am on Tuesday, April 25.

Officers attended and the body of a 35-year-old woman was found within.

“Her death is being treated as unexplained and enquiries remain ongoing. Officers have been carrying out extensive searches of Mugdock Country Park in relation to a missing person in the area.

Detectives confirmed the death of the mum-to-be is being treated as linked to the missing person search.

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