Somerset: Police hunt sex offender wanted over woman’s death | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey

Image source, Avon and Somerset Police

Image caption,

Richard Scatchard was initially treated as a missing person

Police are hunting for a sex offender wanted for questioning about the death of a woman at his home.

Richard Scatchard, 70, from Minehead, Somerset, is wanted on recall to prison and also in connection with a murder investigation, officers said.

Detectives were alerted to the death of Kelly Faiers, 61, from Weston-super-Mare, on 15 October.

Scatchard poses a serious risk to women he forms relationships with, Avon and Somerset Police said.

A forensic post-mortem examination to determine the cause of Ms Faiers’ death was inconclusive but it is currently being treated as suspicious.

Det Ch Insp Jess Aston said: “We initially treated Scatchard as a high-risk missing person due to concerns he presented an immediate and serious risk of harm to himself.

“As our inquiry has progressed, we have become less worried about his welfare and far more concerned about the danger he presents to other people.

“His previous behaviour, along with information we have gathered since his disappearance, makes us anxious that he may have formed a new relationship with one or more women, and that he presents a serious risk to their safety.

“Scatchard is a prolific user of dating apps and has previously been convicted of sexual offences in which he administered drugs to his victims.”

Image source, Avon and Somerset Police

Image caption,

Police say Richard Scatchard poses a serious risk to women he forms relationships with

Police said “extensive searches” were continuing in the Minehead area but have been so far unsuccessful.

There have been 24 reported sightings of Scatchard following earlier appeals, with the majority of these in Minehead and nearby Watchet.

The last confirmed sighting was on Blenheim Road in Minehead on 16 October.

Members of the public are urged to call 999 immediately if they see him, and not to approach him, police said

‘Anywhere in the country’

He may be using a distinctive electric bicycle, a grey Gepida Alboin Curve with a pink front tyre rim, flowers on the rim of the rear tyre, and green and yellow electrical tape around the handlebars.

Scatchard is described as white, about 5ft 11ins (180cm), of average build with short grey hair.

He speaks with a Scottish accent and has previously claimed to be called Richard Dunlop.

Ms Aston added: “Our professional standards department has been made aware of the incident and the initial police response to it, and are currently carrying out an assessment.

“Scatchard could be anywhere in the country – we know he has recent links to the Cornwall, Gwent and South Wales areas while previous links include Cheshire and Leicestershire.”

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