Pensioner arrested over 1982 murder after body found in septic tank

The remains were found at Brenda Venables' old home

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

An 86-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of murder after female remains were discovered in a septic tank in the Worcestershire village of Kempsey.

The remains are believed to be those of Brenda Venables, who was reported missing by her husband David Venables in 1982.

West Mercia Police launched a murder investigation after the remains were discovered on July 12, during routine maintenance of the septic tank at the farmhouse where the couple used to live.

While the identity of the remains has not yet been confirmed, a police spokesman said the “general circumstances” led them to believe that they belonged to Mrs Venables.

On Tuesday, police officers were carrying out searches at the bungalow where Mr Venables, aged 86, now lives in the village.

In May 1982, Mr Venables told the Worcester News: "I just woke up to find that she had gone.

"She has never done anything like this before and I haven't the faintest idea what has happened to her."

Today, police officers carried out searches in the bungalow where Mr Venables now lives in the village, saying it is a “line of investigation".

Flowers have been laid on the tank in what one neighbour described as a “friendly, sleepy neighbourhood.”

Another resident of the cul-de-sac near the crime scene said police had spoken to them when the remains were first discovered.

One woman, who declined to be named, said: “It’s quite astounding, to actually find somebody in a cesspit.”

Speaking of David Venables, she added: "We don't see him, really. He gets out of his bungalow and into his car and then comes back."

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