Body in Stevenage woodland identified as missing student Joy Morgan

10 October 2019, 17:49 | Updated: 10 October 2019, 18:36

A body found in Stevenage has been identified as missing student Joy Morgan.

Ms Morgan, 20, was murdered by Shohfah-El Israel, but the married father has never revealed where her body is.

Police were called to reports of a body on 5 October in woodland off Chadwell Road, just outside of the previous search area in the Hertfordshire town.

A post-mortem has not yet been able to establish how she died and further tests will be carried out.

El-Israel, 40, was found guilty of her murder in August and is serving a life sentence with a minimum of 17 years.

Ms Morgan's mother, Carol, had pleaded with him to reveal where her daughter's body was.

Outside the court, she said: "Give me my baby back, he knows where she is. The way I hear it, he was besotted with her... if he loved her, give her back up to us so I can bury my daughter."

Ms Morgan met her killer at the Israel United in Christ Church in Ilford, east London, and they spent time alone together - against the church's strict rules.

El-Israel went to great lengths to cover his tracks by removing her number from a church online chat and visiting her shared house to check on her after she apparently went missing.

Ms Morgan, who lived in Hatfield where she was studying to be a midwife, was last seen at a church event in Ilford on Boxing Day and reported missing on 7 February after failing to return to her studies.

Detective Chief Inspector Justine Jenkins said: "My thoughts are with Joy's family at this difficult time and while nothing can end their pain, I hope that this gives them closure and I am glad that they will now have the opportunity to say goodbye to Joy."