Detectives investigating the alleged murder of Guy Hedger will be carrying out searches of the Slades Farm area of Bournemouth and the Canford Magna area of Wimborne in a bid to find the weapon involved.

Following police enquiries, searches will be carried out during Friday, August 25 and Saturday, August 26 2017. The Canford Magna search will include searches in the River Stour and the riverbank near to Canford Parish Church.

Detective Chief Inspector Sarah Derbyshire, of the Major Crime Investigation Team, said: “Our investigations into this case are continuing and as a result we will be carrying out searches of the Slades Farm and Canford Magna areas in the hope of recovering the weapon.

“We apologise for any disruption caused to the public while the searches are carried out and appreciate everyone's patience and cooperation.”

Mr Hedger, 61, was killed in the early hours of the morning on Sunday, April 30 2017 at his home in Castlewood, Ringwood, when he was shot after intruders reportedly entered his home.

Officers were called just after 3am reporting Mr Hedger had been shot with a shotgun. He was later pronounced dead shortly after arriving at hospital.

Kevin Downton, who is 40 and from Winterborne Stickland near Blandford, 41-year-old Jason Baccus and 44-year-old Scott Keeping, both of Verney Close in Bournemouth, are all charged with murder.

They are next appearing at Winchester Crown Court on Friday, September 8 2017.

Helen Cooper, also known as Helen Keeping, was charged with assisting an offender and is also due to appear at Winchester Crown Court on Friday, September 8 2017.

A 39-year-old Bournemouth man and 46-year-old Poole man previously arrested in relation to the incident were released under investigation.

Independent charity Crimestoppers has offered a £10,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of the firearm used during the alleged murder as well as the jewellery reportedly stolen during the incident and detectives say there has been a positive response to the appeal.

The investigation team is urging anyone with information who has not already contacted them to come forward.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at, via email or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55170062746.

Alternatively contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or via