New Search for Suzy Ends without Success

Disappointment as field excavation has "negative" result

Suzy Lamplugh Trust

New Twist in Jill Dando Murder

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The Metropolitan Police's latest hunt for the body of missing Fulham estate agent Suzy Lamplugh in a Worcestershire field has ended without success.

On Tuesday, police began excavating an area of the field where a member of the public reported having seen disturbed earth shortly after she vanished in 1986.

But after an examination using ground-penetrating radar to find if the earth had been disturbed 24 years ago, a police spokesman said the search was "negative".

On July 28, 1986, 25 year-old Suzy left Sturgis' estate agency in Fulham Road - now the office of Chesterton Humberts - to show a house at 37 Shorrolds Road to someone described in her diary as "Mr Kipper".

The night her white Ford Fiesta was found in Stevenage Road, with the keys missing, but with her purse containing £15 still in the pocket of the driver's door.

After she vanished, officers examined thousands of lines of inquiry and conducted DNA testing on 800 unidentified bodies, but no trace of Suzy was found and she was officially declared dead in 1994.

Although the case was first closed in October 1987, the file remained open and the investigation was reopened in 2000. In December that year, officers conducted a fingertip search at the former Army barracks in Norton, near Worcester, but were not thought to have found anything significant.

At the time there was a suggestion that Suzy may have been murdered by convicted killer John Cannan, and a former girlfriend of Cannan's, Gilly Paige reportedly told police he had claimed to have buried her in this location.

This new search, of a piece of land between Pershore and the village of Drakes Broughton, was about three miles from those barracks.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said earlier this week: "Officers investigating the disappearance of Suzy Lamplugh will be carrying out a search on Tuesday of a small area near Pershore in Worcestershire. The Met remains committed to solving the Suzy Lamplugh case and we will continue to work towards this end. We will follow up any information in relation to this case."

A spokesman for the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, which was set up in her memory by her parents Diana and Paul to raise awareness about personal safety, said friends and relatives were being careful not to get their hopes up.

As the search began, her father Paul, 79, said: "The police have kept me fully informed and I look forward to further information with interest."

August 12, 2010