Murdered Dawn's 'face was burnt'

MURDERED fitness fanatic Dawn Walker had suffered serious burn injuries to her face when her body was found, it has emerged.As detectives continued to investigate how the 37-year-old from Fornham St Martin, near Bury St Edmunds, was killed, fresh details about the murder surfaced last night.

MURDERED fitness fanatic Dawn Walker had suffered serious burn injuries to her face when her body was found, it has emerged.

As detectives continued to investigate how the 37-year-old from Fornham St Martin, near Bury St Edmunds, was killed, fresh details about the murder surfaced last night.

Police had already admitted that, at some stage, Miss Walker's body was set alight. But the EADT has now learned her face had also been at least partially burned.

As speculation continued to mount in the community around Fornham, police - who have been unable to determine whether Miss Walker was burned before or after she died - moved to reassure residents by conducting fresh house-to-house inquiries close to the victim's home in Oak Close.


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However one resident, who did not want to be named, said yesterday: "The whole investigation is a worry in the village and my wife, like many others, is now frightened to go out.

"We have lived in this village for a long time. This has all been a massive shock in such a quiet community."

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Miss Walker's charred and semi-naked body was discovered next to the River Lark at Fornham Park at around 5.10pm on Friday, February 4.

She was last seen at her home at around 9.30pm on Wednesday, February 2 - and police have since revealed they are keen to speak to two people heard arguing just 45 minutes later close to the printing assistant's home.

A post mortem examination carried out in Ipswich following the discovery of her body proved inconclusive and further tests are set to take place to determine a cause and time of death.

Police continued their investigations yesterday while a mobile police unit remains stationed at Fornham All Saints Post Office.

Det Supt Roy Lambert, who is leading the investigation, said: "Over 30 officers remain committed to the investigation, while the unit is providing reassurance in the community. If anyone has any fears or concerns, they can visit that unit."

Meanwhile, Ed Schofield, general manager of the Swallow Suffolk Hotel where Miss Walker regularly used the gym, said: "Obviously the police were around the hotel during most of last week giving out leaflets with Dawn's picture on it, and it was then very much current and at the forefront of people's minds.

"The mobile police unit which was in our car park was taken away on Tuesday, and we are not sure if that signifies the investigation has moved away from the area.

"But although people are still very conscious of what has happened, they are very much getting on with life and I think people are probably moving on."

Mr Schofield said any members who had concerns about the events of two weeks ago would now be chaperoned to their vehicles, while some using the complex had requested lighting in the complex's car park was upgraded.

"That could almost suggest our car park is a more dangerous place than the riverbank," he said. "But in all likelihood, whatever happened took place outside of the hotel.

"And as much as I would like to respond to every scenario, it is hard to get the balance between putting this into perspective and context at the same time. I hope the leisure members take that into account.

"However, when something like this happens on your doorstep it is very disturbing, whichever way you look at it."

Anyone with information should contact Bury St Edmunds police on 01473 613996, by text on 07624 800174 or by email to incident.room@suffolk.pnn.police.uk.

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