Sheffield man’s 12 year quest to find the truth about mum’s murder on city estate

Danny Grainger believes someone has information which could see justice done

By Paul Whitehouse

9 AUG 2020, 05:00am

Original Source: Examiner Live

It should have been a routine Sunday for children playing in the Hartley Brook area of Sheffield, but August 10 in 1997 will doubtless have stayed etched on the memories of those who were unfortunate enough to stumble upon the body of murdered Pat Grainger.

The discovery of the 25-year-old’s body ended a week-long search which began after she failed to return to her family home in Buchanan Road on Parson Cross, a short distance away.

She had been hidden beneath the frame of a divan bed.

Pat’s death shocked the estate as it emerged she had been sexually assaulted, strangled and her body sexually mutilated.

But the case for South Yorkshire Police investigators was never going to be easy.

The fact her body had been in water meant the forensic evidence they might have expected to find was not present and although they got as far as charging a man with her murder, the case against him collapsed and the charge was withdrawn.

For Pat’s family, that was as close as they got to seeing justice.

 

 

Although investigations continued – which included using covert techniques – detectives were never able to put together a case with sufficient evidence to warrant a trial.

Pat’s son was a young child at the time and he grew into adulthood under the shadow of the knowledge that his mum’s killer had evaded justice.

And despite the lack of professional success in concluding the investigation, he has failed to give up hope that one day justice will be done.

Danny Grainger’s attempts to discover the truth about his mum’s death began in 2008, when he had turned 16, and his campaign continues to this day.

It has seen him meet a person who appeared to be a key witness in the early stages of the investigation and to pass on countless pieces of information to police.

But as the case has dated it has been through the hands of around half a dozen senior investigating officers and, Danny believes, the impetus may have been lost.

He pressured police to get the case on the BBC Crimewatch programme for several years, but that never happened.

‘I realised I needed some answers before I could move forwards’

Now the Grainger family and the Crimestoppers charity have each offered £5,000 as a reward for anyone passing on information which results in a conviction.

That offer was made earlier this summer and will run for another three months.

He believes the offer of a substantial reward is the last option which has not yet been tried to get fresh information on a killer he believes is likely to still be at large.

He said: “I was just turning 16, I had a few problems at school and whatnot. I got some help and I realised I needed some answers before I could move forwards.

“It is not just myself, but my family, the effect it has had on them.

“You would be amazed how many people have approached me to say they have some information.”

 

Although that had all been passed to police, it had not resulted in the investigation moving forwards, he said: “I hand them information but never get a response.”

As part of his endeavours, he set up a ‘Who killed my mum’ Facebook page to help generate fresh publicity for the unsolved crime because he believes someone in the area may still hold crucial information.

A South Yorkshire Police spokesman said: “The death of Mrs Grainger remains under continual review by our Major Incident Review Team, as do all other undetected homicide investigations.

“We take any new information, intelligence or lines of enquiry seriously and allocate resources to look into them accordingly.”

Anyone with information can contact Crimestoppers by telephone on 0800 555 111. Information can be passed anonymously and reward money paid without identities being disclosed.

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