Sussex

Visitors to West Sussex beaches quizzed over two deaths

Cathy and Keira Madden
Image caption Cathy Madden's note claims her daughter died in an accident at sea

Police are to question visitors to four West Sussex beaches to try to shed light on the deaths of a four-year-old girl and her mother.

The body of Keira Madden was found at home in Bognor Regis at about the same time as her mother, Cathy, 40, threw herself from an East Sussex clifftop.

A note apparently written by Mrs Madden was found next to Keira's body claiming she had drowned in the sea on 2 July.

Officers will be at Felpham, Climping, Witterings and Pagham beaches.

The mother and daughter, who lived in Roundle Avenue, Felpham, were known to visit the four local beaches.

Police are hoping to find members of the public who saw them a week ago.

'Build a picture'

"It is important that we do everything we can to try and find members of the public who may have seen Cathy and Keira at the beach the day before they died," said Det Ch Insp Nick Sloan.

"We are trying to build up a picture of what happened and need anyone who thinks they saw them to come forward and talk to us."

Police are also continuing to appeal for information about Mrs Madden's Renault Megane car, which she drove to Birling Gap on Saturday.

Her body was later found at the bottom of the Seven Sisters cliffs. Chaplains had tried to coax her away from the cliff edge.

Toxicology tests

Officers will be at Birling Gap on Saturday in a bid to trace anyone who may have seen her.

Keira's body was found in a bedroom at their home.

Police have been unable to confirm the cause of her death. A post-mortem examination was inconclusive and officers are awaiting the results of toxicology tests.

Mrs Madden had been going through a divorce from the child's father, Steve Madden, a self-employed computer expert who lives and works in Germany.

He returned to the UK every three weeks for access visits to see Keira.

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