People living in Netherfield have been left ‘utterly shocked’ after a local woman was exhumed from her grave and a murder inquiry launched.
Notts Police recovered the body of Jennifer Blackwell from Carlton Cemetery yesterday (August 10), two months after her funeral.
At the same time, a 38-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of her murder.
Police said on Friday afternoon he has since been released on bail pending further inquiries.
Detectives say Ms Blackwell’s death in April was not considered suspicious but “new information” had changed their view and led to a re-opening of the case.
On Friday (August 11) neighbours and people in Netherfield who knew the family said police had re-examined the home on Norman Street where she was originally found dead.
One local man, who asked not to be named, who knew of the family and had been a schoolmate of Jennifer, said: “They were born and raised round here and she’s lived around here all her life.
“She was a nice girl. I remember when she died just hearing she’d been found in the house.
“We went to the same school and they are a nice family who keep themselves to themselves. It’s very sad.
“I was utterly shocked when I heard about the police getting involved again.”
The 43-year-old was found dead at her home on Norman Street on April 28. Police have not revealed what has since led to the review but say it was “absolutely necessary” to exhume her body for further tests.
Neighbour Christian Payne, 41, lives on Norman Street, close to the terraced house re-visited by police yesterday.
“It’s shocking – everyone just keeps themselves to themselves on these streets,” he said.
“Yesterday morning there were quite a few police on the street and I heard them saying ‘open up’ outside the house.
“Then later there was a crime scene investigation van across the road.”
Det Supt Rob Griffin of Notts Police said on Thursday “new information” had led to the operation and arrest of the 38-year-old man, who he described as someone “already known to” Jennifer.
“We have been to exhume Jennifer in order that we can re-start an investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death,” he said.
“As a result of some information we received after the funeral it caused us the police, in conjunction with the coroner, to conduct further inquiries.
Video: Det Supt Rob Griffin of Notts Police said “new information” had led to the operation.
“Because of the information we received it caused to feel her death was suspicious and because of that we took what is quite an unusual step of exhuming her body.
“Shortly after the exhumation of Jennifer’s body a post mortem took place.”
Of the arrested man, he added: “He is a local man who is known to Jennifer. It’s important for people to know and understand that they were known to eachother – they were known quite well to one another.”
He added Ms Blackwell’s family were “supportive” of the investigation and decision to exhume her body.
Described by police as a “close knit” family, they are being supported by police family liaison officers.