Essex

Money raised 'to thank' James Fairweather tip-off woman

Michelle Sadler Image copyright Michelle Sadler/Facebook
Image caption Hairdresser Michelle Sadler was told she was ineligible to receive a Crimestoppers reward because she called police with a tip-off

A crowdfunding page has been set up to raise money for a woman who missed out on a £20,000 reward because she tipped police off about a double murderer.

Michelle Sadler was told she was not eligible to receive Crimestoppers money after she told police James Fairweather was hiding in bushes in Colchester.

Fairweather, 17, was given two life sentences for the murders in April.

Megan Rowley, who set up the JustGiving page, said she wanted "give people the chance to thank" Mrs Sadler.

"Michelle never expected to get any money for what she did, but we want to show we're grateful," Miss Rowley said.

Fairweather was found guilty of stabbing James Attfield and Nahid Almanea to death in Colchester in 2014, when he was 15.

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Image copyright Essex Police
Image caption Nahid Almanea and James Attfield were stabbed to death in Colchester in 2014

Mrs Sadler, a hairdresser, was walking her dog in May 2015 when she saw him hiding in bushes near the same spot he had attacked his second victim.

She rang police on 101 after recognising his jacket from appeals, and he was arrested and taken into custody.

As first reported in the Colchester Gazette, Crimestoppers said rewards were only given to people who ring its number rather than the police.

The charity told the BBC its position had not changed after recent coverage, and it would not be making any further comment.

Image copyright Facebook
Image caption James Fairweather was given two life sentences in April for the murders

"If that's what Crimestoppers says in its guidelines and those are its terms, then that's its choice," Miss Rowley said.

"But that's not going to stop people from giving money if they think Michelle deserves it."

Miss Rowley, from Colchester, said she was hoping to raise £4,000 and would feel "happy that I was able to give something to Michelle on behalf of the community" if she succeeded.

The BBC has contacted Mrs Sadler for a comment.

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