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Inquest to open into death of airman Corrie McKeague four years after disappearance in Bury St Edmunds



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An inquest is to be held into the death of airman Corrie McKeague who went missing after a night out in Bury St Edmunds four years ago.

Following an application at the request of Corrie's family, the Chief Coroner for England and Wales has directed the Senior Coroner for Suffolk to hold an inquest into his death which is believed to have been on September 24, 2016.

A date for a short inquest opening hearing is yet to be finalised, but is expected to be held in the next two weeks.

Corrie McKeague
Corrie McKeague

A pre-inquest review hearing will be held early in 2021 and the inquest itself will follow later in 2021.

The 23-year-old, who was from Fife and based at RAF Honington, was last seen in the early hours of September 24 in Brentgovel Street, Bury St Edmunds.

Suffolk Police's Corrie McKeague poster. (43004830)
Suffolk Police's Corrie McKeague poster. (43004830)

Police reviewed more than 1,100 hours of CCTV footage which showed Corrie sleeping in a doorway in the town before moving away.

Searches were carried out in a wide area between Bury St Edmunds and Honington.

In the months which followed Corrie’s disappearance, police zoned in on a bin lorry which collected waste from the area in the hours after the last confirmed sighting of Corrie.

Their hypothesis was that Corrie - who police said was known to sleep in rubbish following a night out - had been in the bin which was collected from the area of Bury St Edmunds known as the horseshoe.

Police carried out a search of a Milton landfill site in an attempt to find missing airman Corrie McKeague. Picture: Suffolk Police (43004833)
Police carried out a search of a Milton landfill site in an attempt to find missing airman Corrie McKeague. Picture: Suffolk Police (43004833)

The young airman’s phone was recorded as having travelled away from Bury St Edmunds at the same time as the bin lorry.

The lorry was seized and searches carried out but no trace of Corrie was found.

Officers also spent 20 weeks from March 2017 searching an area of a landfill site in Milton, Cambridgeshire, which covered 920 square metres of waste at a depth of eight metres.

The search continued until July 2017 but was resumed in October of the same year to allow searches to be carried out in a different area of the site.

On March 26, 2018, Suffolk Police released a statement which said that detectives had ‘reached the point where there were no realistic lines of enquiry left to pursue’.

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