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Body in caravan confirmed as on-the-run sex offender with links to Leicestershire

The body of a man found in Watchet earlier this week has been confirmed as Richard Scatchard – a wanted sex offender who had links to Leicestershire.

Leicester Time: Body in caravan confirmed as on-the-run sex offender with links to Leicestershire
Picture: Avon and Somerset Police

Police were called shortly after 2pm on Thursday (4 April) after a member of the public found a man’s body in a caravan.

Mr Scratchard, 70, had not been seen since the day after Kelly Faiers died at his home in Minehead on Sunday, October 15 last year. A murder enquiry was soon launched, but Scatchard, who initially spoke with police following Kelly’s death, vanished, sparking a major manhunt to locate him.

Ms Faiers, 61, from Weston-super-Mare, had met Scatchard on a dating app, and on 14 October they went out together for the evening.

Detective Superintendent Gary Haskins, of the Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “Both Kelly’s family and Richard Scatchard’s family were notified after the body was found. We have now informed both families that the body recovered has been confirmed as Scatchard.

“While it is apparent Scatchard died some time ago, the forensic post-mortem examination proved inconclusive in determining the cause of death. Therefore, as is routine in such cases, we continue to treat the death as unexplained, albeit we are not aware at this time of there being any suspicious circumstances.”

Avon and Somerset Police said a file was now being prepared for the coroner. The force also confirmed it had referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct following its contact with the wanted man in the immediate aftermath of Kelly’s death before he later disappeared and went on the run.

“A mandatory referral will be made to the Independent Office for Police Conduct after confirmation of Scatchard’s death following police contact. This is because we spoke with the 70-year-old at the scene of Kelly’s death last October, shortly before he disappeared, before carrying out subsequent enquiries to find him.”