Moors Murders: Search for Keith Bennett’s body restartson September 30, 2022 at 1:31 pm

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Police search for the body of Keith Bennett, killed in 1964, after “potential remains” are found.

Keith BennettImage source, PA Media

The search for the body of one of the Moors murderers’ victims has restarted after “potential human remains” were found on moorland, police have said.

Keith Bennett, 12, was one of five children tortured and killed by Ian Brady and Myra Hindley in the 1960s, but his body has never been recovered.

Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said it had received information about a “site of interest” on Saddleworth Moor.

Keith’s brother had been told about the “potential development”, it added.

Keith disappeared on 16 June 1964 while on his way to his grandmother’s house, who lived close to his home in Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester.

Police searched Saddleworth Moor in 1986 following reports Hindley and Brady had confessed to his murder.

‘Initial exploration’

His mother Winnie Johnson, who died in 2012, spent her life trying to locate her son, even taking to the moor herself, armed with a spade.

A plaque in her and Keith’s memory was placed on the moor, with the inscription: “To Winnie and Keith. May you both RIP. Keith will come home.”

GMP’s Force Review Officer Martin Bottomley said police had been contacted on Thursday by the representative of an author who has been researching the murders.

He said after “direct contact with the author, we were informed that he had discovered what he believes are potential human remains in a remote location on the moors”.

Plaque for Winnie Johnson and Keith Bennett

Image source, Christopher Furlong

Mr Bottomley said the author had agreed to meet officers “to elaborate on his find and direct us to a site of interest”.

He said after a site assessment, specialist officers had “begun initial exploration activity”.

“We are in the very early stages of assessing the information which has been brought to our attention, but have made the decision to act on it in line with a normal response to a report of this kind,” he said.

“It is far too early to be certain whether human remains have been discovered and this is expected to take some time.”

Brady, who was born in Glasgow but later moved to Manchester, was jailed in 1966 for the murders of John Kilbride, aged 12, Lesley Ann Downey, 10, and Edward Evans, 17.

In 1985, he also admitted to murdering Keith and 16-year-old Pauline Reade.

The children had been abducted by Brady and his lover Hindley, who died in prison in 2002, between 1963 and 1965.

Brady, who died in 2017, never revealed where Keith’s body was buried.

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