Abuse greets Sian O'Callaghan murder accused

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The Independent Online

The devastated father of Sian O'Callaghan today described her as "bright, bubbly, caring and friendly", hours after angry scenes erupted as the man accused of her murder appeared in court.

Fighting back tears Mick O'Callaghan said that his family's pain at hearing of the 22-year-old's death had been "raw and overwhelming".

Earlier a police convoy was attacked outside Swindon Magistrates' Court as taxi driver Christopher Halliwell, 47, appeared in open court for the first time since being charged with killing Miss O'Callaghan.

Abuse was shouted from the public gallery in Court 2 and, after the short hearing, a crowd of more than 100 people screamed obscenities and tried to attack the van carrying Halliwell as it took him away. A large number of them chased the van down the street.

Miss O'Callaghan went missing in the early hours of Saturday March 19 after a night out with girl friends in Swindon.

She was last seen alive in CCTV footage filmed close to the Suju nightclub in the early hours.

She lived in a flat half a mile away with Mr Reape, 25.

Hundreds of people turned out to help a public search of Savernake Forest, near Marlborough, Wiltshire, after her mobile phone was traced to the area after she left the club.

But her body was discovered 15 miles away, close to the Uffington White Horse, on Thursday last week.

Halliwell was arrested on Thursday at a taxi rank at an Asda supermarket in Swindon.

Meanwhile police officers continue to examine a body found 10 miles north of Swindon, near the village of Eastleach in Gloucestershire, on Saturday.

The remains, thought to be those of a woman aged between 23 and 30, have yet to be formally identified as police attempt to match them to women reported missing around the time she is thought to have died, between 2003 and 2005.

The cordon around the scene at Eastleach in the picturesque Gloucestershire Cotswolds, has been lifted.