UK

Georgia Williams 'Body' Found, Police Say

31/05/2013 18:03 BST | Updated 31/05/2013 18:44 BST
PA
Police Superintendent Nav Malik from West Mercia Police holds up a poster of missing teenager Georgia Williams, 17, of Wellington in Shropshire, West Midlands, who has disappeared from her home. A man was arrested in Glasgow this morning on suspicion of kidnapping the girl who has yet to be traced.

A body found on the Nant-y-Grath pass near Wrexham is believed to be that of teenager Georgia Williams, West Mercia Police said.

A 22-year-old man was arrested on Thursday on suspicion of murdering the 17-year-old who has been missing since Sunday.

Jamie Reynolds will appear in court in Telford, Shropshire tomorrow morning.

Reynolds was originally arrested in Glasgow on suspicion of kidnapping Miss Williams, of Wellington, Shropshire.

Superintendent Malik said the body had not been positively identified, but early indications suggested it was linked to Georgia's disappearance.

He said: "Within the last hour, following liaison with the Crown Prosecution Service, we have charged 22-year-old Jamie Reynolds with the murder of Georgia Williams.

"For obvious legal reasons, I am not in a position to talk to you about that, to ensure a fair court outcome in due course.

"Sadly, yesterday afternoon, new evidence came to light which identified that Georgia had in fact died at an address in Wellington, in Telford here, and clearly that information has led us to where we are today.

"I can also confirm that this afternoon the body of a female, a young female, has been found in woodland in the pass near Nant-y-Garth in Wrexham, north Wales.

"At this moment in time we haven't identified that body, but early indications do suggest it's linked to the disappearance of Georgia Williams."

Officers had been searching woodland and have taped off an area in a nature reserve about 17 miles from Wellington.

Uniformed officers and a police tent are currently at Brown Moss Nature Reserve, Shropshire.

Georgia had not been seen since telling her parents she was going to see friends at 7.30pm on Sunday.

Police said she had her mobile phone with her when she left, but the last calls and text messages were received from the device at about 8pm that night.

Superintendent Malik said police had been liaising closely with Georgia's family, "who are naturally devastated by the events of yesterday afternoon and late this afternoon as well."

He said all investigations were challenging. "This has proved particularly challenging given that colleagues are working relentlessly, but also that one of the colleagues, Georgia's father, is a police officer within this organisation here, and it's been emotional for them.

"Whenever someone from a police family is involved, it is particularly distressing, clearly."

He thanked the investigation team for the progress they had made, the Crown Prosecution Service, and policing partners for their support, and the public and press.

Reynolds would be going to Telford Magistrates' Court in the morning, he said.

Earlier, friends of Georgia spoke of their hope of her safe return as they leafleted people in her home town of Wellington in a bid to raise awareness about her disappearance.

She was described by close friends as "bubbly", with a great sense of humour.

Katy Lafferty, who was Georgia's best friend and helped organise the leaflet drop, said her disappearance was "heart-breaking".

The 17-year-old praised the support that had been expressed by thousands of people via social media.

Liam Ball who goes to New College in Telford, where Georgia attended lectures, described his friend as "friendly, bubbly and lovely with a great sense of humour".

The 18-year-old, of Shifnal, said: "She is everything you could want in a friend.

"If I didn't feel like I was doing something to help I just wouldn't be coping."