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Murder police hunt missing man

Police hunting the killer of a pensioner battered to death in her own home are searching for a missing man in connection with the inquiry.

Northumbria Police said they believe Graeme Jarman could help with the investigation into the murder of 77-year-old Judith Richardson, who was bludgeoned to death with a hammer.

Mr Jarman, 47, was reported missing by Durham Constabulary on Friday night after he disappeared from his home in Greenways, Delves Lane, Consett, on August 17.

Police warned people not to approach Mr Jarman and described him as posing "a risk to himself and others".

Miss Richardson's body was discovered by police in the hallway of her stone-built terraced home in St Wilfrid's Road, Hexham, Northumberland, on August 19, after her stolen handbag and some of its contents were found stuffed into a litter bin in Newcastle city centre, 25 miles away.

The leather handbag was found by a member of the public in a bin outside a charity shop in Clayton Street. Police, believing they were dealing with a simple lost property or theft case, were confronted by Miss Richardson's battered body on the Friday evening.

A post-mortem examination showed she died from head injuries. Police found a hammer in a plastic bag in the street near her home and have confirmed that was the murder weapon.

Three police forces are searching for Mr Jarman, who is believed to have been seen in Stockton town centre on Friday but could be "anywhere in the North East".

He was described as a heavily built man of average height, clean shaven with dark hair and last seen wearing blue jeans, a light blue polo shirt with dark cuffs and carrying a dark jacket. It is believed he may have recently shaved his head.

A man and a woman, both pensioners, were arrested on Monday in connection with the murder. Annie Snaith, 78, a charity shop worker, and Edward Brewis, 84, both of Hexham, have been released on police bail pending further inquiries.


From Belfast Telegraph