England

Remains found in Bradford women search 'not human'

Susan Rushworth and Shelley Armitage
Image caption Police are searching for the remains of Susan Rushworth and Shelley Armitage

Police investigating the deaths of three women in Bradford have said remains found in a river are not human.

The discovery was made in the River Aire in Shipley on Saturday near to where body parts belonging to Suzanne Blamires were found four days earlier.

Forensic examinations are to take place on a suitcase full of tools, which was also found in the river.

Stephen Griffiths, 40, is charged with the murder of sex workers Ms Blamires, Susan Rushworth and Shelley Armitage.

A West Yorkshire Police spokesman said: "Further forensic examinations on remains recovered this weekend show they are not human but animal waste which appears to be from food preparation.

"The suitcase recovered on Saturday is still to go undergo forensic tests."

Excavations examined

Although the remains of Ms Blamires, 36, have been found, there has been no sign of Ms Armitage, 31, or Ms Rushworth, 43.

Mr Griffiths, of Thornton Road, Bradford appeared in court on Friday where he gave his name as the "the crossbow cannibal".

He is due to appear at Bradford Crown Court again via videolink from Wakefield Prison on 7 June.

Image caption Stephen Griffiths was arrested at his home on Monday

Forty-five detectives are now working on the case with support from about 70 other officers.

Ms Armitage, 31, has not been seen since 26 April and Ms Rushworth, 43, has been missing for almost a year.

Officers have been conducting fingertip searches across the city, including a search of the drains around Mr Griffiths' Thornton Road flat.

Police said searches were continuing to try to find the bodies of the two other women.

The spokesman added: "Officers from West Yorkshire Police's Underwater Search Unit are continuing the search of the River Aire, and have cancelled all planned training exercises and activities over the coming week.

"Officers are also continuing to search areas of Bradford city centre, which includes examining excavations carried out by utility companies working within the city."

Prayers were said for the three women at church services in Bradford on Sunday.

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