BREAKING: Body of Preston murder victim identified as a woman, not a man as police first thought

Forensics at the murder scene in Village Drive, Ribbleton.
Forensics at the murder scene in Village Drive, Ribbleton.
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A murdered body found on a street in Preston has been identified as that of a woman.

Detectives had mistakenly identified the body as belonging to a man after they launched a murder investigation this morning.

But nearly ten hours after the body was discovered in Village Drive, Ribbleton, detectives have confirmed that the body is female.

Detectives are continuing their investigation into the murder, after it was first reported at 2am this morning (Thursday, February 7).

Police were called after an altercation was reported on Pope Lane in the Moor Nook area.

READ MORE: Pictures: The scene in Ribbleton after body found in Preston

Earlier this morning, shortly before 9am, Lancashire Police released a statement confirming the body was that of a man who had been pronounced dead at the scene.

Emergency Services correctly identified the body as belonging to a woman but she has not yet been formally identified.

READ MORE: LIVE: Murder investigation launched and man arrested after body found in Ribbleton

DCI Geoff Hurst from Lancashire’s Force Major Investigation Team (FMIT) said: “We are still at the very early stages of our investigation and our priority is getting in contact with the woman’s family.

“We know that she has been the victim of a brutal assault and we have a number of detectives working on finding out exactly what has happened to her.

"I would urge anyone who may have seen or heard anything in the area at the time to get in touch as soon as possible as you could have vital information that could help our investigation.

“The woman’s body remains where it was found whilst we carry out our forensic inquiries and this could take some time.

"I would like to reassure local residents that we are trying to keep disruption in the area to a minimum and we have stepped up patrols. If you have any concerns, please speak to an officer.”

A 25 year old man from Preston has been arrested close to the scene on suspicion of murder and remains in custody at this time.

Anyone with information about the incident can call 101 quoting incident reference 88 of today (February 7).

If you are concerned that this woman may be a relative, you can also call 101 but instead quote log 433 of February 7.

A post mortem examination to determine the cause of the woman’s death will take place in due course.

Follow our live blog with all the latest updates and details on the ongoing murder investigation