The man accused of murdering Elm man Terry McSpadden has this afternoon (Friday) walked free from court after the judge threw the case out.
Judge Jacobs dismissed the case against Jonathon Porter at Norwich Crown Court, citing insufficient evidence. Mr Porter, of Outwell Road, Elm, was charged with Terry’s murder at the start of December.
Head of the Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team, Detective Superintendent John Brocklebank, said: “This was a difficult investigation which was carried out over several years and involved close working with the Crown Prosecution Service.
“Based on the evidence gathered and advice from counsel, a decision was taken in November 2012 to charge Jonathon Porter with the murder of Terry McSpadden. In light of today’s decision, we will now go away and review our investigation in conjunction with the CPS to determine any other opportunities which may now be available.”
Frank Ferguson, Senior District Crown Prosecutor, said: “We were satisfied there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction and that the case should go to court. Following an application by the defence, which we contested, the judge has ruled that the case should not go ahead. We will be looking at the reasons for this to see if there are any lessons to be learned.”
Det Supt Brocklebank continued: “A large number of officers worked on this case as a missing person inquiry, and this continues as a murder inquiry.
“Exactly six years after Terry was reported missing, his family still do not know what happened to him and we will continue our investigation to give them answers and find him. Terry was well known in the local community, known as a reliable, hard worker by his employers, and had two young children and strong local ties.”
Anyone with information, about Terry’s death or the whereabouts of his body, should call the Norfolk and Suffolk Major Investigation Team on 101.