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Helen Bailey murder trial - police officer tells how he discovered her body

Helen Bailey and Ian Stewart

A police sergeant told a jury the body of murdered children's author Helen Bailey came to the surface of a cesspit at Royston inHertfordshire after he prodded the contents with a garden hoe.

Sergeant Stephen Oliphant was given the hoe by a contractor who had been asked to empty the pit beneath her garage following the arrest of her partner Ian Stewart.

The well at Helen Bailey's House Credit: Hertfordshire Police

I pushed the object into the water and realised it was an arm of a body.

The body was beneath the crust initially. Solid matter was moved away and the body came to the surface.

– Sergeant Stephen Oliphant

The body of the 51 year old author and her dog Boris were recovered in July from the garage at the large detached house she shared with her fiancé Ian Stewart in Royston, Herts. Three months earlier he had reported her missing.

Mr Stewart, 56, denies murder, preventing a lawful burial, fraud and three counts of perverting the course of justice.

The trial continues

Watch a video report by Chloe Keedy:

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Appeal to find missing Hexham woman Jennifer Hillier

Missing Hexham woman Jennifer Hillier Credit: Northumbria Police

Police are appealing for help in tracing a missing 20-year-old Northumberland woman.

Jennifer Hillier, from Hextol Terrace, in Hexham, was reported missing on Monday, January 16, at 5.30pm from her home.

She is white woman, 5 ft x 5" tall, slim build, with dark brown shoulder length hair and a pale complexion. It is not known what she is wearing.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Northumbria Police on 101, quoting reference number 836 of 16/01/17

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