Angela Millington (33), from Southend, was last seen in February 2014 by Street Pastors. Angela was homeless at the time and it's not been released whether she had been reported missing. It's said that Angela had lived a 'chaotic' lifestyle and had both lived with her partner in Southend and on the streets of the town. On the 21st June 2014, Angela's body was discovered by ramblers washed up on Foulness Island - sparking a murder investigation.
Sadly the police were only able to collect Angela's skeletal remains and so they could not determine a cause of death. Foul play was suspected due to a 'mask made of strong, adhesive tape' being found around her face, however police have stated that they're not sure whether it was put there before or after her death. No clothes were found at the scene.
Foulness Island is a large expanse of marshland separated from the mainland by creeks. Little over 200 people live on the island, which is mainly farmland. It is also owned by the Ministry of Defence, though the public are allowed in some areas. Due to security on the island, it was likely Angela entered the water on the seafront and her body was washed up by tidal waves or placed there.
In April 2005, a man in his late 60s, from nearby Eastwood, was arrested on suspicion of Angela's murder, then released on bail pending further enquires. December 2005, the same man was rearrested, then released with no charge. Between these two arrests, in October a 51-year-man from Westcliff was arrested. Again, he was released without charge.
There have been no developments made public since Essex Police's last appeal in 2016.
Currently there are no theories in this case - leaving the public and Angela's family to speculate.
The things we know:
The location where the body was found is surrounded marshland and water. This would make it extremely difficult to deposit a body there.
Angela was found with a 'duck tape' mask on her face. Though she was skeletonized.
No clothes were found at the scene.
The things we don't know:
Was Angela reported missing? ie. her partner
Was the partner's house searched for signs of a struggle?
Was the train station CCTV at Southend and other close stations checked?
Were members of the homeless community interviewed?
Were any DNA tests attempted on the 'mask'.
Theory 1 - Stranger Attack
Because Angela was homeless, this sadly opened her up to potential harm and abuse. She could have been taken from the streets in Southend, or lured somewhere, without anyone noticing. It's not been released whether Angela was reported missing, but even if she had been, the sad reality is that her disappearance may not have been investigated due to her being in the homeless community. So one theory is that Angela was a target of an individual / individuals who took advantage of her, gained control of her (put ducktape over her face), and disposed of her body in the water.
Theory 2 - Known Individual Attack
As with any murder investigation, you always look at the people closest to the victim. Not much is known about Angela's 'friendship group', but we do know she had a partner, and it could be considered that she interacted with other members of the homeless community in Southend. We don't know how Angela was earning money for food, or whether she had any issues with drug use of addiction (though sadly this is not uncommon in the homesless community.) Could Angela have 'upset' someone who was known to her?
It could be wondered whether Angela was actually attacked on the Island itself. With it's vast areas of marsh and farmland - it would seem a good place to commit a murder. However, where Angela's body was found, it would have been very hard to carry a body. It's most likely that Angela was thrown into a body of water, and she drifted ashore.