August 05, 2018
Michael Stirling to appear in court on Monday after body of 28-year-old midwife was found by Staffordshire police on Saturday
Man charged with murder of midwife Samantha Eastwood
Police have charged a man with the murder of midwife Samantha Eastwood, whose body was discovered over the weekend.
Michael Stirling, 32, from Cromer Road, Stoke-on-Trent, will appear at North Staffordshire magistrates court on Monday, Staffordshire police said. He is reported to be the brother-in-law of Eastwood’s ex-fiance John Peake.
The body of the 28-year-old was found by officers near Caverswall on Saturday – eight days after Eastwood was reported missing.
The midwife was last seen in uniform leaving work at Royal Stoke Hospital at 7.45am on Friday 27 July.
Two other men, aged 28 and 60, who were arrested on suspicion of assisting an offender, have been released on conditional bail while inquiries continue.
A postmortem examination took place on Sunday, but further tests are required.
Earlier on Sunday, Eastwood’s family thanked the public for their support.
A statement released by the force on Sunday said: “The family of Samantha would like to ask that their privacy is respected at this terrible time. We would like to say ‘thank you’ to all the people who followed Samantha’s story and tried their best to help.”
Eastwood was last seen on 27 July leaving Royal Stoke University hospital after a night shift. Her colleagues raised concerns at 7.20pm on the same day she was last seen after she failed to show up for her next shift.
Staffordshire police said neighbours reported hearing a scream in the vicinity of Eastwood’s house at about 2pm on the day she went missing.
Dozens of officers and police dogs had been scouring an area near Tickhill Lane, Caverswall, about seven miles from the hospital, on Saturday, using large sticks to search bushes, before the body was discovered.
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