Current track

Title

Artist

Current show

The BIG Drive Home

2:00 pm 6:00 pm

Current show

The BIG Drive Home

2:00 pm 6:00 pm


Fred West: Police search cafe for body linked to missing teenager feared to be a victim of serial killer

Written by on 11 May 2021

Police are searching a Gloucester cafe in connection with the disappearance of a teenage girl suspected to have been murdered by serial killer Fred West.

Mary Bastholm vanished in 1968 aged just 15 and her body has never been found.

West, who died in prison in 1995 aged 53, was previously suspected over her disappearance.

Undated handout picture shows convicted mass murderer Rosemary West with her husband Fred. More than a decade after Fred and Rosemary West were arrested for a string of grisly murders that shocked Britain, the man who brought the couple to justice still cannot shake the painfully vivid memories of what he saw. To match feature Crime Britain West REUTERS/Handout/Files Image: Fred West and his wife Rosemary were arrested for a string of grisly murders that shocked Britain

Officers from Gloucestershire Police were called to the Clean Plate cafe in Southgate Street by a production company filming a documentary there.

The company had reported it had found possible evidence to suggest a body could be buried within the property.

Undated file photo of Mary Bastholm, who was 15 when she was reported missing on January 6 1968 and has never been found. Issue date: Tuesday May 11, 2021. Image: Mary Bastholm was 15 when she was reported missing on 6 January 1968

Officers are expected to be there for several weeks, the force said.

West, one of Britain’s most prolific serial killers, committed at least 12 murders between 1967 and 1987 in Gloucestershire, the majority with his second wife, Rosemary.

All the victims were young women. Their dismembered bodies were typically buried in the cellar or garden of the couple’s Cromwell Street home in Gloucester, which became known as the “House of Horrors”.

Workmen watch as 25 Cromwell Street Gloucester, the former home of serial killers Fred and Rosemary West, is demolished October 11. Image: 25 Cromwell Street Gloucester, Fred and Rosemary’s former home, was eventually demolished

Fred is known to have committed at least two murders on his own.

In 1994 he admitted murdering his daughter Heather, while Rose is known to have murdered Fred’s stepdaughter, Charmaine. The couple were apprehended and charged in 1994.

A police tent outside The Clean Plate cafe in Southgate Street, Gloucester. Picture date: Tuesday May 11, 2021. Image: Officers are expected to be at the Clean Plate cafe for several weeks

But Fred took his own life while awaiting the murder trial the following year.

Gloucestershire Police said its major crime investigation team has deemed further assessments are required at the cafe in order to determine whether an excavation is necessary.

A white tent was erected outside, with police officers stationed at the front of the building and a police van parked nearby.

Other officers were seen carrying evidence bags out.

Family liaison officers have now been put in place to provide support and updates to Mary’s family.

A statement from them said: “We are aware of the ongoing developments around Mary’s disappearance and are being kept up-to-date.

“At this time, please may we ask for privacy so we can grieve for Mary.”

A police-issued photograph of Fred West. Officers have been called to a cafe in Gloucester by a production company filming a documentary, Gloucestershire Police said. They reported how they had found possible evidence to suggest a body could be buried within the property. The force said in a statement that people have previously linked the building to the disappearance of Mary Bastholm. Mary was 15 when she was reported missing on January 6 1968 and has never been found. Her disappearance had al Image: Fred West took his own life in jail while awaiting trial for murder

Assistant Chief Constable Craig Holden said: “This could be a significant development on a case which has gained a lot of public interest over the years.

“On the basis of the information provided to us, we consider this to be new and potentially important evidence in the case of Mary Bastholm, however further detailed assessments will take place over the following few days to determine the extent of excavation needed.

“First and foremost our thoughts are with Mary’s family and we would ask that their privacy is respected at this difficult time.

“This news may understandably alarm those who work near to the premises, as well as those in the wider Gloucester community and beyond.

“The Constabulary has always said any fresh evidence would be reviewed.

“This has happened and a focussed and proportionate investigation will now take place.”

Source