Christopher Alder's sister speaks of pain one year after dead body mix up discovery
THE sister of Christopher Alder insists the pain is as great now as it was when a body mix-up involving her brother was first discovered a year ago.
Janet Alder claims she is as much in the dark now as she was when she first found out Christopher’s body had lain in a mortuary for 11 years.
His body was discovered in the Hull Royal Infirmary mortuary in November last year, 11 years after his family believed they had laid him to rest following his death in police custody in 1998.
An exhumation of his grave in Hull’s Northern Cemetery earlier this year confirmed Grace Kamara, 77, had been buried in his place.
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A criminal investigation was launched shortly after, which is still ongoing.
Janet said: “I am totally confused and dismayed the investigation has taken this long.
“We know nothing more now than we did a year ago.
“We got such a shock to find Christopher was still in the mortuary when we thought he had been buried 11 years before.
“The pain is exactly the same now as it was a year ago.”
Janet previously questioned if the investigation should be focusing on whether an offence of misconduct in public office has been committed.
She still believes they should be looking at the unlawful prevention of a burial rather, than a public office offence.
“I think the chances of finding out what really happened are slim,” Janet said.
“I don’t think it was a mix-up, I believe somebody switched the bodies. That is my personal feeling.
“I don’t think the police are approaching the investigation in the right way.”
There are concerns questions will remain unanswered after it was revealed the funeral director involved in Christopher’s burial has since died, while two mortuary staff have moved abroad.
Detective Superintendent Richard Fewkes, of South Yorkshire Police, is leading the criminal investigation.
In August he revealed the investigation was nearing completion but there have been delays in trying to interview key witnesses abroad.
Det Supt Fewkes said: “We are still awaiting the go ahead from the authorities in Australia to interview someone out there.
“From the outset, it was believed this would be a complex and lengthy investigation and is has very much proved to be the case.”
The mix-up was discovered after family and friends of Grace flew in from Africa for her funeral and asked to see the body.
The exhumation of Grace’s body at Northern Cemetery, in west Hull, took place in February.
The body of Christopher was re-buried in an undisclosed location in the city in February.