Southampton Common death: Family pay tribute to Gerald Pragnell

  • Published
Gerald Pragnell and his son AidanImage source, FAMILY HANDOUT
Image caption,
Gerald Pragnell (on the right with his son Aidan) was last seen leaving Southampton Airport

The family of a man who was found strangled in Southampton have said they are "devastated" by his death.

Gerald Pragnell, 66, disappeared after leaving work on 1 November. His body was found off Cemetery Road, near Southampton Common, on Saturday.

Tommy Scott, 34, of no fixed address, appeared at Winchester Crown Court on Thursday charged with his murder.

Mr Pragnell was a "loving father, granddad, partner, brother and uncle", his family said.

"He was a genuine, hard-working and caring family man who was adored by all who knew him," their statement continued.

"He was a natural joker who lit up the room with his mischievous sense of humour.

"We have so many stories and memories that will always remain with us and he will always be hugely missed by us all.

"Dad was taken from us much too soon and we're devastated that he won't be part of our future."

Image caption,
Police found the body of the 66-year-old in woodland off Cemetery Road on Saturday

Detectives have returned to the scene where Mr Pragnell was found dead in a bid to find fresh lines of inquiry.

Officers handed out 500 leaflets to motorists, joggers, cyclists and dog walkers.

Mr Pragnell was last seen leaving Southampton Airport, where he worked, at 06:30 GMT.

Hampshire Constabulary is appealing for anyone who saw Mr Pragnell or his silver Mercedes GLA, or who have dash cams and were in the area, to come forward.

Mr Scott was remanded in custody until a hearing in January.

Six other people arrested on suspicion of murder have been released pending further inquiries.

They include five men, aged 20, 23, 24, 25 and 36, and a 31-year-old woman.

Image caption,
Undergrowth has been searched for evidence
Image source, Police handout
Image caption,
Gerald Pragnell had a silver Mercedes GLA with the registration GIW 4045

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