London police reopened an 83 year-old cold disappearance case after receiving notice of a deathbed confession.
Wired PR News.com – The cold case of a teenage girl who disappeared in 1926 has been reopened by detectives in London. As reported by the Associated Press (AP), police reopened the case after hearing of a deathbed confession reported by the 16 year-old’s great nephew in 2007.
Emma Alice Smith was a teenager who disappeared when riding a bicycle one day in between a railway station and her home. The mystery of her disappearance remained unsolved for 83 years before police told her great-nephew, David Wright, last month that they would reopen the case.
Wright told authorities that his mother had told him of a man who privately made claims that he was responsible for the girl’s death. Wright is quoted as stating in the report, “A gentleman, on his deathbed sometime in 1952 to 1953, had confessed to killing her… But she felt she was unable to bring it to light because her own father had just passed away…It was also a very small community and to make an accusation like that would have been scandalous in those days.”
Sussex Police Major Crime Branch Detective Chief Inspector, Trevor Bowles, is further quoted as stating, “The family are keen to trace the body of Emma, if that is possible, in order that she can be given a proper burial and laid to rest with her close family…A number of local people have already assisted us and have been able to fill in some of the many gaps which exist.”