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Friday 1 June 2012

New Crimewatch appeal to trace vital witnesses to 1994 murder in Eaton, Congleton

Tracey Merten Presspack.match

Cheshire Detectives have renewed their appeal for witnesses to a horrific murder with a further Crimewatch appeal.

Tracy Mertons, who was living in Rochdale at the time, travelled down to Birmingham on 22 December 1994 to collect a benefits book from her former home in Cattells Grove, Nechells, intending to return the same day. Instead, she stayed overnight at her sister-in-law′s and visited the house the next morning.

Shortly before midday on 23 December 1994 she answered a knock at the door of the house in Cattells Grove. It was then she was forcibly taken and driven to Eaton churchyard in Eaton near Congleton in Cheshire to meet a violent and horrific death at the hands of her killers.

She was set on fire and left to die but bravely hung on and was able to tell detectives what had happened to her. She sadly died from 95% burns to her body approximately 12 hours later.

Police believe that vital witnesses are still outstanding and officers are urging them to come forward. By refreshing people′s memories with a renewed appeal it is hoped vital information could be gained.

DS Steve Currie said: "The men blindfolded Tracy and bundled her into what we believe was a yellow Mark II Ford Escort waiting outside the house.

"She told police her attackers spoke with a Jamaican accent.

"A man walked past as the men were forcing Tracy into the car. He was heading toward the Weighbridge MOT Depot near Cattels Grove. At the time she would have been struggling and in great distress.

"This man has never been traced. We believe he is vital in helping us with our enquiries and urge him to get in touch."

He added: "Cheshire Police turned to Crimewatch in 2009 and received crucial information thanks to viewers; however we need those in the Nechells, Congleton and Rochdale to come forward and provide information which could finally help bring her killers to justice."

The renewed appeal featured on Crimewatch on Thursday 31 May 2012 at 9pm on BBC1.

Anyone with information should contact the Operation Eaton investigation team on 101. Alternatively information can be given anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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