DNA screening sessions in Bosham murder case open today

Myles Cullen, Chichester District councillor, encourages residents by being the first person to have a DNA test, given by Detective Constable Lee Taylor from the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team PICTURE BY KATE SHEMILT C141573-5 SUS-150121-115802001

Myles Cullen, Chichester District councillor, encourages residents by being the first person to have a DNA test, given by Detective Constable Lee Taylor from the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team PICTURE BY KATE SHEMILT C141573-5 SUS-150121-115802001

0
Have your say

Sussex Police investigating the murder of Valerie Graves are reminding men who work or live in, or visit, Bosham, that the DNA screening facility is open.

The screening centre in the village is open from 10am to 8pm today (January 25) as well as on the following four weekdays.

More than 500 men have already come forward since the screening began on Wednesday, January 20, and detectives hope others will choose Sunday as a convenient day to come.

The screening is taking place at the Millstream Hotel in Bosham Lane, Bosham, and you can also meet the police at their major incident vehicle in Delling Lane, at the back of the Co-op.

Anyone who attends is asked to bring along photo identification, a passport or the photo driving licence. An officer will fill out some details, check their identification and take a photo of them. Their thumbprint will be taken and a swab will be taken from inside their mouth.

The process is painless and should take no longer than 10 minutes. Police will only use the samples obtained to check against this particular crime and their DNA profile will not appear on any database. Legal safeguards are in place to ensure they are not used for any other purpose.

A Sussex Police spokesman said: “We are very pleased with the response so far to our appeal for all men aged over 17 who live or work in Bosham, or who visit the area, to volunteer their DNA and provide a thumbprint and we hope many more will come in for just a few minutes to help us in what is the biggest voluntary mass DNA screening in our history.”

On December 30, 2013, 55-year-old mother and grandmother Valerie Graves was found brutally murdered in her bedroom in Smugglers Lane, Bosham. She had been staying at the property while the owners were away over the Christmas period. Just over a year on and a significant investigation is continuing into the murder.

The DNA screening sessions started on Wednesday 21 January until Thursday 29 January, then run again from Monday 2 February to Saturday 7 February and again from Tuesday 10 February to Sunday 15 February. All sessions are from 10am to 8pm.

Anyone with information about the murder of Valerie Graves is asked to call 101 and quote Operation Ensign or to call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.