Mystery over foot found near Tewkesbury leads to fresh police appeal
DETECTIVES have issued a fresh appeal for information about foot found near Tewkesbury nearly four years ago.
Gloucestershire police admit they have drawn a blank over whose foot it was and how it came to be separated from its owner.
The decomposed body part was found by a couple walking alongside the River Severn in Deerhurst on Saturday, March 21, 2009.
Since the discovery, officers have been trying to identify the person the foot came from and how it came to be on the riverbank near Odda's Chapel.
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Detective Constable Penny Starkey said: "We have always kept an open mind about how the foot got there.
"Officers carried out a thorough search of the area it was found in, and DNA tests confirmed that the foot belonged to a man but no other clues had been identified and sadly we still don't know the person's identity."
The search of the area in 2009, which included dredging the river, involved specialist search officers, the Severn Area Rescue Association and the police helicopter.
Following the discovery, Gloucestershire police carried out extensive inquiries into missing people across the whole country and officers still liaise with the UK Missing Person Bureau and other police forces.
In June 2012, additional forensic tests were carried out on the foot but none of the results were able to give definitive details about the man.
They did, though, reveal that he was likely to have been white, older than 17 and between 164 and 178cm tall.
The foot was found in a size nine and a half Vision-brand trainer and a dark grey sock. The trainer was grey and blue with a white rubber sole and a blue V logo on the side.
"It has been several years since the discovery and despite an extensive investigation this mystery is still yet to be solved," added DC Starkey. "With all other lines of inquiry exhausted, we're making one more appeal to the public for information in the hope that the case can finally be put to rest."
Anyone with any information about who the foot could belong to is asked to contact Gloucestershire police on 101.
In 2009, walker John Sparrey said that after finding what he described as "this horrible thing", he and his wife realised what they had seen was something sinister. He said he feared it belonged to someone whose body might have been in the river for some time.