Shropshire

Church Stretton murder: Boy, 7, found dead at house

The scene
Image caption Police were called to the house in Wall-under-Heywood on Thursday evening

A woman has been arrested on suspicion of murder after a seven-year-old boy was found dead at a house in Shropshire.

The 44-year-old, named locally as Lesley Speed, is believed to be the mother of Archie Spriggs, a pupil at Rushbury Primary School.

She was found in the home in Wall-under-Heywood, near Church Stretton, on Thursday with "significant injuries".

Police are not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.

West Mercia officers were called to the property in Rushbury Road at 18:15 BST on Thursday.

Latest updates, plus more Shropshire news

West Midlands Ambulance Service said paramedics were unable to revive Archie.

The woman was airlifted to hospital with a number of serious injuries and remains in hospital for treatment to her neck and arm.

Her injuries are not thought to be life-threatening, police added.

Image caption Forensic examinations are being carried out at the rural property

Diane Pye, head teacher at Rushbury Church of England Primary School, paid tribute to Archie, describing him as a "good pupil".

"Archie was a wonderful, bubbly boy and a much loved member of our school," she said.

"He was well respected and will be remembered very fondly as a good friend and pupil.

"He will be much missed by everyone who knew him. Our thoughts and prayers are with Archie and his family and we ask that people continue to respect their privacy at this difficult time."

Image caption Forensic examinations are being carried out at the rural property

From the scene: Giles Latcham, BBC Midlands Today

Last night at about 18:30 a helicopter air ambulance set down in the field behind the house in Rushbury Road which is now at the centre of this murder inquiry.

One neighbour was playing with her young nieces on a patch of grass opposite shortly before it landed.

Today, visibly shocked, she described the seven-year-old boy who has died as "happy, chatty and friendly" and said he moved here from the Shrewsbury area about four years ago.

"He went to school with my sister's girls and they often played together outside" she added.

Four plain-clothes police officers have arrived at the semi-detached property and they spent some time looking at items in the garden.

Forensics officers are continuing their examination inside and the scene remains cordoned off.


Image caption A 44-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of murder

Speaking on Thursday, Supt Tom Harding said: "There has been significant police activity at the address this evening and we expect that this will continue through tomorrow as we try to establish what has taken place.

"Our thoughts are with the family of the young child and we will continue to support them as our investigation progresses."

Police remain at the scene on Friday.

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