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Friday, 5 January, 2001, 15:16 GMT
Torso murder family appeal
Melissa Knott (left) and Pauline Knott, Zoe Parker's cousin and aunt
Relatives of the murdered woman break down in tears
Relatives of a young woman whose severed torso was found in the River Thames have appealed for help in tracking down her killer.

The upper body of 24-year-old Zoe Parker was spotted by a passer-by, in the river near Chelsea Harbour in west London, on December 17.

Detectives believe the body had been cut up by something sharp, such as a Samurai sword.


If anyone knew Zoe or can help please come forward

Zoe's mother, Jacqueline Parker

The 24-year-old's aunt and cousin, Pauline and Melissa Knott, had to be escorted from a Scotland Yard press conference on Friday after they collapsed in tears.

Pauline Knott said: "Can anyone remember anything that may help us resolve this terrible thing that has happened to our sad and lonely Zoe?"

Detective Chief Inspector Guy Ferguson said Zoe - who recently changed her name by deed poll to Cathy Dennis - had been taken into care when she was 18 months old, and had a chaotic lifestyle.

He said she had lived at various addresses around London, including the Feltham and Hounslow area, and across the UK.

She had worked as a prostitute and had learning disabilities, Mr Ferguson said.

'Loving daughter'

He read out a statement by the victim's mother Jacqueline, which said: "If anyone knew Zoe or can help please come forward.

"Zoe was a loving, caring daughter who meant the world to me. She did not deserve this. Please come forward."

Mr Ferguson said Zoe's body might have been in the water for between one and three weeks.

rose tattoo
Zoe's distinctive rose tattoo

He added that the killer was "dangerous and calculating" and said he was keeping an open mind as to the motive.

Zoe's body was identified after family and friends recognised pictures released by police of a distinctive rose tattoo, a twisted tooth and her jumper.

Anyone with information is asked to call 020 8284 9765, 020 8853 1212 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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29 Dec 00 | UK
Torso murder woman named
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