Claudia Lawrence: police to conduct detailed search of missing woman's home (From Darlington and Stockton Times)
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Claudia Lawrence: police to conduct detailed search of missing woman's home
INVESTIGATORS are today launching a painstaking review into the still baffling disappearance of university chef Claudia Lawrence.
A team of forensic experts and police will this morning (Tuesday, October 29) be returning to the missing woman’s home in York for another detailed examination of the building.
And they will be using the latest scientific tests and techniques in the hope of finding that something that could help solve a mystery that now dates back more than four years.
Claudia - born in Darlington and raised in Malton - was 35 when she was last seen alive by colleagues as she finished her shift on March 18, 2009.
Repeated appeals for information and a huge police investigation, which at its height involved more than 100 officers, have so far failed to shed any light on her disappearance - and detectives believe she was murdered.
The North Yorkshire force’s newly-established Major Crime Unit is leading the review which will start with an initial assessment of the house on Heworth Road followed by forensic work which could last for two weeks.
The unit’s head, Detective Superintendent Dai Malyn, said: “Most cold case review work considers forensic re-evaluation as techniques advance and this case is no different.
“I am also mindful that at some point in the future the house may become re-occupied and these opportunities would otherwise be lost.
“Forensic science is continually evolving and hope that advances since Claudia was reported missing will assist our review of the case.”
The move has been welcomed by Claudia’s father, solicitor Peter Lawrence.
“I am grateful for the initiative by the new team investigating Claudia’s case to re-visit her house and conduct further investigations there, including DNA testing,” he said.
“Advances in forensic science and testing in the past four years make this a very worthwhile exercise.”
Detectives are also hoping that the renewed interest could lead them to other people who could have information but have not yet come forward.
“We will afford anyone who contacts us our full attention if they think they have information which could assist - no matter how small or irrelevant they think that information might be,” said Det Supt Malyn.
“It is never too late for people to come forward with information now, that for whatever reason they felt unable to share with us in the past.
“We have officers skilled in dealing with sensitive matters.”
Anyone with information should contact the North Yorkshire force on 101, select option two and ask for the Major Crime Unit or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800-555-111.
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