Margate man arrested on suspicion of murder in search for missing Claire Knights

Claire Knights

Detectives from Kent Police’s Major Crime Unit investigating the disappearance of a woman from Upstreet, near Canterbury, have arrested a man.

Claire Knights, aged 54, was last seen in the village on the morning of Wednesday 23 August. Her vehicle, a silver Suzuki car, has since been found parked in Shuart Lane, St Nicholas At Wade.

She is believed to have walked from there to the Minnis Bay area of Birchington, where she is reported to have been seen later that afternoon.

Her disappearance is now being treated as suspicious and a potential murder.

On Thursday 24 August, a man in his 20s from Margate was arrested on suspicion of murder.

Kent Police officers are continuing searches in Thanet as part of their work to locate Claire. Residents can expect to see an increased police presence as these enquiries continue.

Claire is described as being around five feet and six inches tall, with straight brown, greying hair. She was thought to be carrying a red or pink rucksack and was walking a white and brown spaniel.

Claire was wearing this backpack

Detective Chief Inspector Kath Way said: “Specialist officers are supporting the family at what is obviously an extremely difficult time for them and my officers are working hard to find out what happened to Claire.

“Claire’s spaniel was recovered in Minnis Bay by officers on 23 August, but we have not been able to locate her. It is entirely out of character for her not to contact her family.

“We are keeping an open mind as to what may have happened and still hope to find Claire safe and well, however we are now also treating this case as a potential murder.

“I would urge anyone who may have seen Claire since she was reported missing to contact our appeal line. In addition, if you think you may have seen anything suspicious in the Minnis Bay area do not hesitate to call us. Residents with private CCTV and drivers with dashcam are also asked to check for relevant footage.”

Claire Knights dog Zebulon

Anyone who believes they have seen Claire should call 999, quoting reference number 23-1922. If you have other information that may assist the investigation please contact 01843 222289, quoting the same reference number.

If you have other CCTV or dashcam footage please upload it here:

You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111, or by using the anonymous online form on their website.


  1. I am so sorry to hear about the tragic death of this lady. Unfortunately, I think it seems that another very mentally ill person has not received the treatment and supervision they needed.As a retired psychiatric nurse I know psychosis drives people to do terrible things. Not that I know anything about this incident. Just a guess.

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