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Boy found dead in tumble dryer

A four-year-old boy whose disappearance sparked a police search was found dead in a tumble dryer yesterday.

The child, who was not named, was reported missing from the garden of his home in Ashbourne, Derbyshire, shortly after 10.30am.

A police helicopter was scrambled before the boy was found just under an hour later by his mother and a police officer. A police spokesman said the mother was "distraught, as can be expected, and is receiving medical attention".

Officers would not say whether the dryer was switched on when the boy was found. The spokesman added: "It's normal procedure to search the house to make sure whoever is missing isn't found there." Police said the cause of death was "one of the many things we are trying to establish".