COUNTY NEWS: Murder hunt launched in Sussex village

Searching the scene PHOTO: Eddie Mitchell SUS-150618-142315001
Searching the scene PHOTO: Eddie Mitchell SUS-150618-142315001

MURDER detectives investigating the death of a Sussex man whose body has never been found are today (June 18) searching a street near his home.

About ten officers are combing parts of St Peters Place, off Western Road, in Sompting for clues to death of Mark Manning, formerly of Brighton Road, Lancing.

About ten police officers reported to be at the scene PHOTO: Eddie Mitchell SUS-150618-142251001

About ten police officers reported to be at the scene PHOTO: Eddie Mitchell SUS-150618-142251001

Officers wearing blue overalls have been meticulously sweeping parts of the road, just before the level crossing, in an effort to unearth more clues.

It comes following the arrest of two men in connection with Mr Manning’s murder, a police spokeswoman confirmed.

Mr Manning, 54, a former military bomb disposal expert was last seen on April 19 last year and is presumed dead.

Relatives of Mr Manning had described his disappearance as ‘completely out of character’.

Scenes of crime officer SUS-150618-142303001

Scenes of crime officer SUS-150618-142303001

Officers launched the murder investigation in June last year.

Today’s search is the latest in a string of efforts by Sussex Police in recent months to trace down Mr Manning’s killer.

As previously reported in the Herald, the force had launched a renewed appeal for help on the anniversary of the 54-year-old’s disappearance, in April.

They conducted a search around the lake and grounds of the Brooklands Pleasure Park, in Worthing.

It seemed that following this appeal, police had made a breakthrough in the case.

Last month they arrested, and bailed a 38-year-old man on suspicion of murder.

Then, almost a week later, on May 13, a second man, aged 49, was arrested and bailed on suspicion of killing Mr Manning.

Both of the men have been bailed until June 25 while investigations continue.

Anyone with information about the whereabouts of Mr Manning should ring police on 101 or email quoting Operation Light or call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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