Tayside and Central Scotland

Jenny Methven murder inquiry force's 'biggest'

Jenny Methven
Image caption Police said Jenny Methven had been violently attacked in the kitchen of her cottage.

Forensic officers hunting the killer of an 80-year-old woman in her Perthshire cottage are examining almost 400 items found at the scene, police have said.

Jenny Methven was "violently attacked" in the kitchen of her home near Forteviot on 20 February. She was found dead by her son hours later.

The widow had been beaten with a "blunt object" on her head and body.

Tayside Police said the murder inquiry was one of the biggest the force had ever carried out.

About 80 officers have been dedicated to the investigation into Mrs Methven's death and forensic experts have now spent more than week combing Kildinny Cottage for evidence, which will now be sent to a laboratory for analysis.

Det Ch Insp Colin Gall, who is leading the inquiry, said: "It is fair to say that this is one of the biggest enquiries ever seen in Tayside and is a clear indication that we will use all resources and means at our disposal to trace the person responsible for Mrs Methven's brutal murder.

"Through our methodical approach to gathering evidence and information so far, I am confident that we are getting ever closer to finding the truth.

"At the same time, someone out there knows what happened and what led to the vicious killing of an elderly woman. They should unburden themselves of that secret and contact us now. Call us before we call on you."

Van eliminated

Detectives have established that Mrs Methven ended a phone call to a friend at 10:30 on the day she died after hearing a vehicle reversing up the drive of her cottage. She was never seen or heard from again.

The 80-year-old missed a bus that would have taken her to a doctor's appointment at about 14:30. Her body was found by her son, David, at 17:15.

Witnesses have reported that two vehicles - possibly vans - were parked "nose to tail" in her driveway at about 13:45.

But police said a Draincure van, seen about 500 yards from Mrs Methven's cottage, had actually been there the day after the murder. The driver and the van have been eliminated from the inquiry.

The inquiry team has also appealed for further witnesses to come forward, including:

  • The driver and occupants of a black Range Rover seen in the area
  • A "well-dressed" man seen walking quickly along the B935 from Forteviot towards Forgandenny

Crimestoppers are offering a £10,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest and conviction of Mrs Methven's killer.

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