Case File #0105
Rikki Neave
The Peterborough Murder Case
"He was his own little spirit."
After leaving his house in Redmile Walk, Peterborough, six-year-old Rikki Neave disappeared on his way to school on 28 November 1994. His mother and stepfather reported him missing to police, but the next day the body of the young boy was found in woodland, situated close to the family home. The killer had dumped his school uniform into a nearby bin, and the post mortem concluded he had died from strangulation. The police investigation found that Rikki had been truant from school that day, and was seen playing around the Welland housing estate as late as the evening. Because of her odd behaviour and morbid interest in ritual magic, suspicion immediately fell on his mother, Ruth Neave, and police were soon to learn that she was known to neglect her son. Under the weight of this circumstantial evidence she was charged with his murder and brought to trial, but the jury were not swayed by her guilt and she was exonerated. The Judge did however find her guilty of subjecting Rikki to a catalogue of systematic abuse, and sentenced her to seven years. Long after her release, Ruth Neave has sought the real killer of her son, and made an emotional appeal on the anniversary of his death. On 17 February 2020, investigators announced an arrest in the Rikki Neave case, when a 38-year-old man was charged with his murder.
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