Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point

In Depth

On Air

Archive
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Monday, May 24, 1999 Published at 09:20 GMT 10:20 UK


UK

DNA evidence reopens murder hunt

Police declined to say how the DNA sample was obtained

New DNA evidence in the unsolved murder inquiry of a woman stabbed to death in 1970 has been uncovered, and police are hopeful it may lead them to her killer.

The body of Rita Sawyer, 18, was found in a field in Chesterton, near Leamington Spa. She had been three months pregnant.


The BBC's Geeta Guru-Murthy: "Police are still hopeful they can find her killer"
Warwickshire Police described it as a "very brutal murder", and about 70 officers tried in vain to solve the case.

But an exhibit from the original investigation, which has revealed the killer's DNA, has been submitted to the Forensic Science Service. Police now want to take mouth swabs from the men they interviewed 29 years ago.

DNA profile

A Warwickshire Police spokesman declined to say how the DNA sample was obtained, or how many subjects would be tested.

But he did say that detectives want to "eliminate men who featured in the investigation, and match the new [DNA] profile to the killer".

Ms Sawyer left home three months before her death, and was believed to be sleeping rough.

Police think she was picked up in a car by someone she knew, or by a kerb-crawler. More than 100 women interviewed at the time said they had been approached by men in cars, usually at night.





Advanced options | Search tips




Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


UK Contents

Northern Ireland
Scotland
Wales
England

Relevant Stories

10 Mar 99 | UK
Dumping DNA 'wastes police time'

28 Feb 99 | Sci/Tech
New DNA weapon in fight against crime





Internet Links


The Forensic Science Service

Warwickshire Constabulary


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




In this section

Next steps for peace

Blairs' surprise over baby

Bowled over by Lord's

Beef row 'compromise' under fire

Hamilton 'would sell mother'

Industry misses new trains target

From Sport
Quins fightback shocks Cardiff

From Business
Vodafone takeover battle heats up

IRA ceasefire challenge rejected

Thousands celebrate Asian culture

From Sport
Christie could get two-year ban

From Entertainment
Colleagues remember Compo

Mother pleads for baby's return

Toys withdrawn in E.coli health scare

From Health
Nurses role set to expand

Israeli PM's plane in accident

More lottery cash for grassroots

Pro-lifers plan shock launch

Double killer gets life

From Health
Cold 'cure' comes one step closer

From UK Politics
Straw on trial over jury reform

Tatchell calls for rights probe into Mugabe

Ex-spy stays out in the cold

From UK Politics
Blair warns Livingstone

From Health
Smear equipment `misses cancers'

From Entertainment
Boyzone star gets in Christmas spirit

Fake bubbly warning

Murder jury hears dead girl's diary

From UK Politics
Germ warfare fiasco revealed

Blair babe triggers tabloid frenzy

Tourists shot by mistake

A new look for News Online