Sussex

Men ruled out of Valerie Bosham murder after DNA screening

Valerie Graves Image copyright Sussex Police
Image caption Valerie Graves was hit repeatedly on the head and face with a hammer

Detectives have ruled out 1,472 men over the killing of a woman found bludgeoned to death in West Sussex.

Valerie Graves, 55, was found dead in a ground-floor bedroom of a property in Bosham on 30 December 2013.

Voluntary DNA screening took place involving 2,042 people, more than half of which have been processed.

Officers will go house-to-house in Bosham, asking men to provide a sample if they had not done so, Sussex Police said.

Det Supt Nick May said police would have to be "tenacious" in efforts to catch the killer.

"The process of elimination due to the volume of samples, can take up to two months, although this can sometimes be quicker and we have already given results to more than 1,200 men."

'Tenacious'

She said house-to-house enquiries will take place from 6 to 12 April.

"If we don't get a reply we will also be sending out further letters asking them to attend Chichester police station to give their DNA," she said.

Ms Graves, an artist, is believed to have been beaten to death with a claw hammer as she house-sat for friends in Smugglers Lane.

She had been staying in the house with her sister, mother and her sister's partner.

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