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Man's Body Found On Beach With Sock In Mouth
Police are treating as suspicious the death of a man who was found washed up on a beach naked with a sock in his mouth.
Alan Eric Jeal's body was found at high tide on February 25 on Perranporth beach in Cornwall.
The 64-year-old was only wearing one walking shoe when his body was found by a dog walker.
A post-mortem examination found multiple injuries on Mr Jeal's body that were unlikely to have come from drowning.
Devon and Cornwall Police believe Mr Jeal may have been murdered, committed suicide or died as a result of an accident.
Detective Chief Inspector Dave Thorne said he could not explain why the sock was in Mr Jeal's mouth.
"We can't think of an explanation as to why it would be there and this is one of the reasons we are treating Alan's death as suspicious," Mr Thorne said.
"Officers are keeping an open mind as to the cause of his death. Murder is one possibility we are considering, however his death may have been caused by accident or suicide."
Detectives have released a map and a series of CCTV images showing a man, believed to be Mr Jeal, in the centre of Truro in the early evening before his body was found.
They want to find out where Mr Jeal, from Wadebridge, went after that and how he travelled to Perranporth.
"We are keen to speak to anyone who saw Alan on Monday, February 24, whether walking, on public transport or in a car," said DCI Thorne.
"We have traced his movements up until 6.36pm in Truro city centre but we need the public's help in establishing where he went after that."
Speaking after Mr Jeal's death, his family released a statement paying tribute to him.
"Alan was a mild-mannered, gentle man who was very interested in minerals, mining and surfing," they said.
We are shocked and deeply saddened that Alan's life has been cut short, and are desperate for answers as to what happened.
"We appeal for anyone with information about Alan's life and last movements to contact police."