Thames Valley Police have named the prime suspect in the murder of Leah Croucher, who disappeared in February 2019, as Neil Maxwell, who killed himself in April 2019.
Maxwell was said to have been the only person with keys to the house where remains were found near the 19-year-old’s possessions in Loxbeare Drive, Furzton, Milton Keynes, while the owners were away.
He had been employed by the home owner to carry out some property maintenance at the house.
Neil Maxwell Thames Valley Police
Leah Croucher Thames Valley Police
Maxwell had previous convictions for sexual offences against women and was wanted in connection with a sexual assault in Newport Pagnell in November 2018, the force said.
Detective Chief Superintendent Ian Hunter said in a statement: “I cannot even begin to imagine what it is like for Leah’s parents and family, for three years and eight months not knowing what has happened to their daughter and loved one.
“All of the investigation team who are working on this case are dedicated to finding the truth for Leah’s family.”
He went on: “Today, I am able to confirm that we have nominated a suspect in this case. His name is Neil Maxwell.
“However, Maxwell was found dead on 20 April 2019 having taken his own life.”
In a statement via Thames Valley Police, the family of Leah Croucher thanked the force for its efforts to find the 19-year-old in the past three years and eight months.
Detective Chief Superintendent Ian Hunter said: “They (the family) have specifically asked me to pass on the following message.
“We would like to take this opportunity to thank Thames Valley Police for all their efforts over the past three years and eight months.
“We believe that they could not have done anything differently, they have always approached every conversation with dignity and compassion.
“As a family, we ask that everyone respects our privacy as well as our immediate family, at what is one of the most difficult times of our lives.”