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Major Reward for Clues in Unsolved 2005 Eastbourne Murder

A reward of £20,000 is being put forward in the ongoing investigation into the unresolved murder of Jennifer Kiely, which occurred in Eastbourne in 2005.

Jennifer, who was 35 at the time, was found deceased in a seafront shelter in the early hours of January 22, 2005.

Marking the 19th anniversary of this unsolved case, Sussex police are renewing their appeal for witnesses or anyone with information to step forward.

BBC Crime Watch Appeal

In collaboration with the charity Crimestoppers, they are offering up to £20,000 for information that leads to the arrest and successful prosecution of the individual or individuals responsible for this crime.

Detective Chief Inspector Simon Dunn, of the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team, said: “This remains an active investigation and Jennifer’s family are desperate for answers, as are we.

“We know the seafront shelter was frequented by the homeless community and we are urging anyone with any information which may assist in our investigation to please come forward.”

Jennifer’s body was found after a fire was reported in the shelter on the lower promenade at Holywell on Eastbourne seafront.

She had sustained multiple stab wounds, her body had been set on fire, and the pushchair she habitually had with her was on top of her body.

Jennifer’s family continue to have the support of Family Liaison Officers from Sussex Police, and her mother, Margaret, who lives in Ireland, has echoed DCI Dunn’s appeal.

She said: “I think of her every day. But on her anniversary I can’t stop, I can’t switch off. Somebody, somewhere, knows who is responsible. Just please come forward and let us know.”

DCI Dunn added: “Jennifer was well known in Eastbourne among charities and had many friends, and she spent the last day of her life with friends at an address in Upperton Gardens. That night she had a bath and left at about midnight, and was last seen at about 1am walking west along the seafront in the direction of Holywell. Her body was found by council workers at 5am.

Photo – Sussex Police

“One person we have yet to trace and eliminate from the investigation is a man seen that night walking along the middle of the road at the rear of the Grand Hotel.

“He was described as Eastern European by his accent and appearance. He was about 5’10-11”, of slim to medium build. His hair was a light blond colour, short but in no particular style. His face was round-ish, and he had dominant cheek and jaw lines. 

“He was wearing a dark blue short jacket which had a collar and it was zipped right up to beneath his chin. He had also wore a pair of grey jeans and white trainers.

“Jennifer’s family deserve to know what happened to her and who is responsible.”

To qualify for the reward, you can contact Crimestoppers, who are independent from the police, anonymously on 0800 555 111 or report it online. 

The investigation has previously been featured on BBC Crimewatch, which featured an interview with former Senior Investigating Officer Emma Heater, who has since retired.

Further information can also be found on the UK Police Major Incident Public Portal.

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