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Man accused of murdering vicar

A 47-year-old man has been charged with the murders of vicar John Suddards and retired teacher Betty Yates, police said.

Stephen Farrow will appear before North Avon Magistrates' Court accused of killing the clergyman and the pensioner.

Farrow was arrested in Folkestone, Kent, on Sunday following a tip-off from the public after Avon and Somerset Police launched a nationwide manhunt.

Mr Suddards, 59, was found stabbed to death at his home in Thornbury, South Gloucestershire, on February 14, while Mrs Yates, 77, was also knifed to death at her cottage in Bewdley, Worcestershire, on January 2.

Farrow is accused of the murder of Mr Suddards between February 13 and 14 and the murder of Betty Yates between January 1 and 5.

Farrow also faces a charge of burglary relating to a property in Thornbury between December 21 2011 and January 3 2012.

Detective Chief Inspector Simon Crisp, who led the Thornbury investigation, said: "Once again it has been the contribution of a member of the public that has made the difference - my thanks go to that person for their courage in providing us with that vital information."

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Jamieson, of West Mercia Police, said: "I would also like to express my gratitude to those members of the public who have helped us and responded to our appeals and I would also still encourage people to come forward and talk to us if they have information which could assist our inquiry.

"We still have a strong police presence in Bewdley and hope this will help reassure people that the area, and indeed the whole of the West Mercia, remains a very safe place in which to live, work and visit."


From Belfast Telegraph