More time to quiz suspect

Charlene Downes
Charlene Downes

Detectives have been granted a further 24 hours to quiz a 51-year-old man over the murder of Blackpool schoolgirl Charlene Downes.

District Judge Pamela Baldwin sitting at Preston Magistrates Court yesterday granted Lancashire Police further time in which to question the man who is being held at Preston divisional police HQ.

Three officers arrested the man at around 8.30am in Preston on Tuesday.

The Gazette is choosing not to name him at this stage in the inquiry. No charges had been brought in connection with the case last night.

Although Charlene’s body has never been found, detectives upgraded their investigation to a murder inquiry in March 2006.

Two men were acquitted of killing her during a re-trial after a jury in 2007 was unable to reach a verdict. The men were awarded compensation.