Debbie Griggs: Police find remains of woman murdered by husband more than 20 years ago

The remains of Debbie Griggs were discovered in the back garden of a property in St Leonards, Dorset, Kent Police said

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The remains of a woman who was murdered by her husband more than 20 years ago have been found buried in a garden in Dorset.

Debbie Griggs was 34 and pregnant when she went missing from her home in the Kent seaside town of Deal in May 1999.

Her husband, Andrew Griggs, was found guilty of her murder 20 years later, in October 2019, following a cold case review.

Police received a tip-off two weeks ago that her remains may be in the back garden of a house in St Leonards in Dorset, where Griggs had moved in 2001.

Debbie Griggs
Debbie Griggs
Andrew Griggs
Andrew Griggs

Officers found human remains including teeth fragments which were used to identify Mrs Griggs.

In a statement released on Monday, Kent Police said: "Acting on information received, specialist officers and staff excavated the back garden of a property in St Leonards, Dorset, on Wednesday 5 October 2022 where they discovered human remains including teeth fragments.

"Andrew Griggs had moved to the property in July 2001 following the conclusion of the initial investigation into Debbie’s whereabouts.

"The remains were subject to a post-mortem examination on Friday 14 October, where specialist odontologists were able to confirm the teeth fragments belonged to Debbie.

"Further tests will now be required to establish the cause of her death.

"Enquiries will also be carried out to establish how Debbie’s remains came to be at the property."

Detective Chief Inspector Neil Kimber of the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate said: "It is now more than 20 years since Debbie Griggs was murdered by her husband but we have never given up hope of one day finding her remains and giving her loved ones some closure.

"Andrew Griggs denied being responsible for his wife’s disappearance but this discovery is further proof that he was lying all along, causing even greater anguish for everyone who knew and loved Debbie. Whilst they continue to mourn her tragic loss to this day, I hope they can take some comfort in the knowledge that she can now be laid to rest.

"We will continue to keep Debbie’s family updated on the progress of our ongoing enquiries and provide support to them at this difficult time."