South Yorkshire Police in bid to solve 30-year murder mystery after woman is strangled

An anniversary appeal for information has been made by South Yorkshire Police today – 30 years to the day that a murder probe was launched after a woman was strangled.

Thursday, 21st January 2021, 7:14 am

Wendy Gallagher was killed in her home in Barnsley but her murder remains unsolved.

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Wendy, who was 24 when she died, lived alone at her home in Princess Street and was last seen alive in Barnsley town centre on Friday, January 18, 1991.

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Wendy Gallagher was strangled 30 years ago

Her body was discovered three days later – January 21 – after she had been strangled with an electrical cord.

Detectives are taking advantage of advances in scientific technology to re-examine forensic evidence seized at the time of the murder in the hope that previously undetected traces of DNA can be identified now.

They also want anyone with information previously not disclosed to detectives to get in touch.

Dave Stopford, Head of South Yorkshire Police’s Major Incident Review Team, leading the police probe, said: “Wendy’s family have been waiting for justice for three decades, and I really do hope that by taking a fresh look at this case, we will be able to provide them with the answers they desperately need.

“Advances in science mean that we have so many more forensic opportunities now than we did in 1991. However, I also want to encourage anyone who holds any information about her death, who has not disclosed it previously, to contact us.

“Allegiances and relationships change and diminish over time and it’s never too late to tell us what you know.

“Seeking justice is as important to us now as it always has been. You may think it insignificant, but even the smallest bit of information can help us piece together what happened.”

Wendy’s sister, Maureen, said: “Although it’s now been 30 years, the distress of losing a little sister never fades.

“The trauma of this had a devastating effect on my parents who have now both passed away never getting any justice for the murder of their youngest daughter.”

Anyone with information should call the Major Incident Review Team on 0114 2961399 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.