Sex Offender Wanted for Questioning in Woman’s Alleged Murder After Alleged Failures by Police Family Says Put Them at Risk and Left Them Without Information

WESTON-SUPER-MARE, England – The family of a woman found dead in the home of a convicted sex offender was forced to resort to Google to uncover the man’s criminal history. Kelly Faiers, 61, was found deceased at Richard Scatchard’s residence in Minehead on October 15. Despite previous convictions for drugging women and sexual abuse, Scatchard was not taken into custody by police for questioning and had vanished when officers returned the following day.

Avon and Somerset Police launched a public appeal to locate the 70-year-old, but initially did not disclose he was a convicted sex offender. The family of Ms. Faiers criticized the police for not taking Scatchard’s criminal history into account and for leaving them in the dark during the investigation. They filed a formal complaint against the force, expressing frustration with the lack of progress and information received from investigating officers.

After her 20-year marriage ended in 2021, Faiers moved to the seaside town and began a relationship with Scatchard after meeting him on a dating app. On October 15, emergency services were called to his home, where Faiers was pronounced dead at the scene. Scatchard has been on the run for several weeks and is considered dangerous by Avon and Somerset Police.

The force described Scatchard as a risk to the public, particularly women he forms relationships with, and released CCTV images of him having a drink at a pub in Minehead with Ms. Faiers the night before she died. They are investigating the possibility that he is being harbored by another woman. The family expressed their desire for justice and answers promised by the police but not yet provided.

Kelly’s death continues to be treated as a murder inquiry. The National Crime Agency has been assisting in the search for Scatchard, providing specialist advice to help develop search plans. The force has received a complaint from Kelly’s family in respect to the police response and has voluntarily referred it to the Independent Office for Police Conduct. Scatchard is white, about 5ft 11ins tall, with a Scottish accent, and has previously claimed to be called Richard Dunlop. The police have urged anyone who sees Scatchard to call 999 and provide the reference 5223259285, warning not to approach him.