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Policewoman's body found in West Sussex woods

Haslemere house
Image caption Police have cordoned off the house in Haslemere where the woman lived

A former detective has been arrested after the body of a policewoman was found in woodland in West Sussex.

Surrey Police were called to a house in Haslemere on Sunday night, where it is believed the woman lived. She has been named locally as Heather Cooper.

The body of the detective constable, who was in her 30s and whose family are from York, was found in Blackdown Woods near Lurgashall.

The man, 35, arrested on suspicion of murder is believed to be her partner.

He used to be a detective with Surrey Police, where Ms Cooper was a serving detective constable.

A post-mortem examination is to be carried out on Tuesday.

Image caption The body was found in Blackdown Woods near Lurgashall in West Sussex

An area of the woodland has been cordoned off while forensic officers carry out an investigation.

The house in Haslemere also remains cordoned off while police forensic teams examine it.

A spokeswoman for Surrey Police said: "Officers from Surrey Police were called shortly before 11.30pm yesterday [Sunday] to a report of a concern for safety.

"Following inquiries, officers attended an address in West Street, Haslemere, and then Blackdown Woods, near Lurgashall, where a search of the woodland led to the discovery of the body of a woman in her 30s."

Detectives have appealed for any witnesses who saw a silver BMW estate car in the area of West Street, Haslemere, and Tennyson's Lane near the Blackdown Woods car park between the hours of 11:00 and 23:00 BST on Sunday to contact them.

Det Ch Insp Nick May, of the Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team, said officers were trying to build up a picture of events on Sunday.

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