9th Dec, 2016

Family of Jesse Richards relaunch appeal to find his body

Coventry Editorial 7th Aug, 2016 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

SEVEN YEARS after Jesse Richards was beaten to death by a gang of men from Coventry, his heartbroken family has renewed their appeal for any information which could help police locate his body.

Jesse Richards, from Surrey, was killed in Cleeve Prior near Evesham over a drugs debt on July 31, 2009 after being subjected to a sustained and brutal attack.

His body is thought to have been taken to an area in Warwickshire by his attackers to be disposed of.

Five men were jailed in connection with his death in April 2012 and were sentenced to over 58 years in prison – including Coventry man Kevin Houston who was jailed for 19 years for manslaughter and six-and-a-half years for obstructing a coroner, and Matthew Robert Taylor, from Wyken, who was jailed for 13 years for manslaughter.

But Jesse’s body was never recovered.

Now, seven years on, his devastated mother, Lucy, has reiterated her pleas for anyone with information to come forward.

“I speak to those people who have information but haven’t contacted police,” she said.

“If they could for one minute put themselves in my place they would know the heartache I am feeling and have felt for the last seven years.

“I ask anyone who has any information that could lead me to my son’s body to please contact the police.”

West Mercia Police Superintendant Mark Loader, who led the investigation, said that while justice had been served to Jesse’s killers, his family continue to suffer having been denied the opportunity to lay him to rest.

He added: “The investigation found evidence to suggest Jesse’s body was transported to an area in Warwickshire some time after his death but was never found.

“We know some individuals have information which could lead us to Jesse’s body and are choosing not to come forward.

“I appeal to them to consider the pain Jesse’s family continue to suffer long after his death and ask them to re-consider contacting police.

“If you have any concerns about coming forward to police you can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and make an anonymous report with any information you have.”

A £10,000 reward is still available for information leading to the successful discovery of Jesse’s body and anyone with any information is encouraged to contact police using the non-emergency number 101.