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Post-mortem fails to identify mystery human bones found in Suffolk river
30 August 2020, 15:31
A post-mortem examination has failed to identify the person or cause of death of two mysterious bags of bones found in a Suffolk town earlier this week.
A member of the public spotted the bags in the River Stour in Sudbury on Thursday afternoon and called a nearby ranger.
The ranger moved the bags out of the river and placed them in another location before discovering the contents and calling the police.
Officers removed the bags and sent them to the Home Office for examination, completed on Sunday morning, but pathologists were unable to establish any form of identification or cause of death.
Further tests are to be conducted on the bones while two police scenes – one around the river and the other where the bags were moved to - remain in place.
Temporary detective superintendent Mike Brown, the senior investigating officer, told reporters it will be "a lengthy process" to discover how the bones ended up in the river and to whom they belonged.
Det. supt. Brown said: "This initial examination has unfortunately not been able to move us any further forward at this stage.
"The remains will now be subject to further specialist forensic tests which we hope will provide us with more information.
"This process will take time, so it may be a little while until we are able to provide any further significant updates.
"At the forefront of all of our minds is that this was a person – somebody’s child, parent, partner or sibling – and at all times the bones will be treated with the utmost respect and dignity as the tests are completed.
"I would appeal to anyone who believes they have information about this discovery to contact us without delay - this includes anyone who believes they may know who deposited the remains, or anyone who saw someone carrying two black bin bags towards the river over the past week.
"We understand this discovery will have shocked and alarmed many people, but as stated before this is an incredibly rare occurrence and we do not believe there is any wider threat to anyone or cause for concern.
"Officers will remain at the scene over the coming days and extra patrols are taking place to provide reassurance.
"Finally, I just want to say thank you to all the local residents who have so far assisted us with this investigation, by either providing us with information, or simply for their patience as we conduct our enquiries.”
Specialist trained officers are continuing to search the immediate area around the river and its banks, with the assistance of divers from the Metropolitan Police Marine Policing Unit.
Officers have also closed the footpath between Meadow Gate and Croft Gate along the river - including the Croft Road footbridge - for the next several days.
Detectives are appealing for anyone who may have driven their vehicle in the vicinity of The Croft since Monday 24 August and has a dash cam fitted, to review the footage to see if they captured anything of significance.
Suffolk Police is urging anybody with information about the discovery to contact the major investigation team via an online portal or by calling 101.