Tees

Stolen bothers' skulls remain missing after a year

Image caption Durham Police cordoned off part of the graveyard at Metal Bridge

The skulls of two teenage brothers that were stolen from a family grave have not been found a year after they were dug up, police have said.

The grave, in County Durham, was the final resting place of Levi George Price, 16, who died in 2001 and Gareth Price, also 16, who died in 2005.

Police said the theft, on 21 November last year, was linked to a feud between travelling families.

Detectives said the investigation into the "depraved act" remained open.

Officers descended on Metal Bridge Cemetery, near Ferryhill after someone noticed damage to the grave of the brothers.

Image caption Officers called for the feud between travelling families to end

Their skulls were taken and have not been located since, despite police appeals and major searches around traveller sites.

Gareth Price was found hanging at Lancaster Farms Young Offender Institution in 2005, the day before he was due to be sentenced for rape.

An inquest found he had been let down by a series of people in authority.

Levi Price was found hanging in a shed in 2001. The coroner found he could not be sure the teenager intended to kill himself.

At the time of the theft Det Supt Adrian Green said: "I think anyone would agree, from whatever community you might come from, that this is a depraved act and the community doesn't have to stand for this."

A year on, a spokesman for Durham Police said: "The investigation continues.

"Anyone with information should contact police and the information provided will be looked at.

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