Weybread murder latest: Man arrested in connection with murder of Peter Stuart and disappearance of wife Sylvia
- Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2016
A man arrested in connection with the murder of Weybread man Peter Stuart will remain in police custody overnight.
Officers arrested the 61-year-old man from Leicester at about 8.30am today after the body of 75-year-old Mr Stuart was found on Friday evening. His wife Sylvia Stuart is still missing.
The man will now be brought back to Suffolk, from Leicester, where he will be interviewed by detectives.
Detective Chief Superintendent Simon Parkes said: 'Our focus remains on locating Sylvia as a matter of priority, while gathering evidence in the murder enquiry. We would continue to ask anyone who may have information that can assist to come forward immediately.'
More than 20 officers have been searching woodland near the couple's Mill Lane home, where Peter's body was found, today.
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Around 25 officers in white coats could be seeing searching nearby fields. The search wound down again late on Sunday afternoon.
These teams are being assisted by officers from other eastern region constabularies – including Essex and Cambridgeshire – and Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service.
Peter and Sylvia, 69, were reported missing to police on Friday morning, having not been seen since Saturday May 28.
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Police then found a clothed body, thought to be Peter's, in the woods next to the Stuarts' home, Brick Kiln Cottage, on Friday night.
Speaking before the arrest, Steve Pickess, 69, who lives around the corner from the Stuarts and owns Orchard Cottage caravan and camping site, said he was shocked by the news of the body being found.
He said Mr Stuart used to walk down Mill Lane regularly to keep fit and added that Mr Stuart would always wait for him to say hello.
But he said he had not seen his neighbour for a few weeks. 'He was a pleasant man and helpful,' he said.
Det Chief Supt Parkes, who is leading the murder investigation, said yesterday: 'Our real concern now is for the safety of Sylvia and that is why we are putting our energies into locating her.
'There is a huge amount of work going on in terms of seeing if Sylvia is maybe in the woods, but we have got a whole a raft of enquiries to try and locate her.
'We are still hopeful we can find her, but we are exploring all the possibilities available to us.'
'There is a whole sequence of events which appear to be completely out of character,' he said. 'The mere fact that they are missing is almost unique in its own right. These are not the people that we would expect to find missing at any stage. It was the concern from the relatives and neighbours which really caused us the concern.'
Det Chief Supt Parkes wouldn't go into details about how Mr Stuart is thought to have been murdered but said the body they believe to be his was found clothed in the woods.
He added: 'What we know so far is that we believe he was last seen on Saturday, May 28, so that is the Bank Holiday weekend and what we are looking to do is really try and piece together the movements of Peter and Sylvia from that Saturday, in fact right up to the current time because we still obviously have not given up hope of finding Sylvia alive.
'They were seen by relatives, a normal family event (at the house) it was not a party, it was just some relatives meeting up at a family house as people normally do on a weekend so nothing extraordinary at all.'
Det Chief Supt Parkes said there had been a 'limited' response by the public so far and said police were reassuring villages by stepping up patrols in Weybread.
• Call Suffolk Police with information on either 01473 782000 or 101, quoting CAD number 49 of Friday June 3.