VIDEO: John Edwards named as a suspect in murder probe
POLICE have named John Edwards, estranged husband of missing Grafton school teacher Sharon Edwards, as a suspect in the investigation into her disappearance and suspected murder over a year ago.
If you're asking me is he a suspect, yes, Mr Edwards is a suspect.
At a media conference outside the NSW Police headquarters in Sydney this morning, Coffs/Clarence crime manager Detective Inspector Darren Jameson revealed new information regarding the ongoing investigation into Mrs Edwards' disappearance.
"Mr Edwards' status in this investigation is of a significant interest to us, particularly his movements of the morning," Det Insp Jameson said.
"You've asked me directly 'is he a suspect in this case?'. Can I say that we are still trying to rule aspects in or out. At this stage we have information that we are still assessing, it is an ongoing investigation, and can I just say we are keeping very much an open mind.
"But if you're asking me 'is he a suspect?', yes, Mr Edwards is a suspect."
UPDATE, 2PM: This morning all was quiet at the Lawrence house of John Edwards, who was named today as a suspect in the suspected murder of his estranged wife Sharon Edwards.
Windows on the house have been covered with sheets, and witnesses say he has not been outside the house for days.
National media are waiting outside the house, trying to catch a glimpse of Mr Edwards or any movement on the property.
This morning, people were seen delivering basic supplies to the house and a steady stream of cars have driven past the house slowly.
On March 18, 2016, NSW Police released CCTV footage of Sharon Edwards with friends at the Good Intent Hotel, South Grafton before she disappeared on the night of March 14, 2015. The footage shows Mrs Edwards standing at a stable at eight second intervals.
UPDATE, 11AM: While police have previously revealed Mrs Edwards was last seen in public with friends at the Good Intent Hotel in South Grafton on the night of March 14, 2015, Det Insp Jameson confirmed today she was last seen alive by Mr Edwards at her Riverdale Court house in Grafton.
When questioned on the nature of the meeting between the two, he replied that it was of significant interest to the homicide investigation.
"We are looking at the movements of not only Mrs Edwards on the night but her estranged husband and other persons," he said.
"The engagement between Mrs Edwards and her estranged husband John Edwards on the night is of interest to us, in particular the nature of that engagement. The aspect of whether there was a verbal or a physical aspect is of interest to us... and particularly the movements of the two after that."
Det Insp Jameson went on to say that while investigators were keeping an open mind, Mr Edwards was a suspect.
It was also revealed that forensic analysis of mobile phone data shows her phone migrated to the Lawrence area, where the pair owned a house together and where Mr Edwards now resides, and continued to emit a signal into the morning of March 15.
Her phone, handbag and car and house keys are yet to be found and Det Insp Jameson said police were waiting on further forensic analysis which would hopefully pinpoint the exact location of the mobile phone.
"During the investigation, there's been nothing we've been able to find to indicate a reason for her to go to Lawrence area on that evening," Det Insp Jameson said.
"There was no reason for that mobile phone to migrate to Lawrence and that's of significant interest to us.
"What we're appealing for now is that someone out there may know not only significant information... but also many know small snippets of information can greatly assist us.
"We know her mobile phone migrated from Grafton to Lawrence area. Anybody in that area, and it's a small tight-knit community, may be able to provide that small bit of information may be able to assist us as we try to piece together the puzzle of her disappearance. That information may be the key to assist us in solving that mystery."
WATCH: The entire press conference below:
Plea from her son
Sharon's youngest son, Josh Edwards, also thanked the community for their continuing support of the Edwards family.
"The last year has been very tough on our family but the people of Grafton have been very good to us; showing us how much they, too, love mum," he said.
"Not only did we have friends and family helping look for her, we had people from across the community offering to help out in any way they could.
"A year is a long time without any contact and any answers. It's heartbreaking for all of us - we miss her so much.
"On behalf of our family, I'm asking for anyone who knows anything that could help us find our mum to get in touch with police."
Anyone with information in relation to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
UPDATE 10.10AM: POLICE have named estranged husband John Edwards as a suspect in the disappearance of Sharon Edwards during a media conference in at NSW Police headquarters in Sydney this morning.
Coffs Clarence Local Area Command crime manager Detective Inspector Darren Jameson today revealed more details about the disappearance of Mrs Edwards who was last seen on March 14, 2015 and the subsequent police investigation.
In response to a question Det Insp Jameson confirmed Mr Edwards was a suspect in the investigation.
Later today NSW Police will release a video of CCTV footage of Mrs Edwards with friends on the evening she disappeared.
6AM: Police will update the media later today on the continuing investigation into the disappearance and suspected murder of school teacher Sharon Edwards one year ago.
Mrs Edwards, aged 55, was last seen in Grafton on the evening of Saturday, March 14, 2015.
The mother, grandmother and primary school teacher was due to teach classes the following Monday (March 16), but failed to attend.
Despite extensive investigations, searches, and appeals by police, Mrs Edwards has not been located, and detectives believe she may have met with foul play.
Strike Force Burrow was formed by the Coffs/Clarence Local Area Command to investigate Mrs Edwards' disappearance and suspected murder.
The press conference will be conducted by Coffs/Clarence crime manager Detective Inspector Darren Jameson at the Sydney Police Centre in Surry Hills.