Date: 1 Oct 2008
Melita Jo was beaten to death in a churchyard.
She was found by a passer-by with serious injuries on a bench in St Mary's Churchyard on 30 September 2008 at 8am. She had been beaten about the head and body with a blunt instrument.
Her cause of death was given as blunt trauma to the head and body.
A man was charged with her murder and a trial date set for the Old Bailey but the Crown Prosecution Service dropped the case after deciding that it was not strong enough.
She was a homeless person and a Filipino national. she had been living in the churchyard for some time and was found on the bench on which she regularly slept.
The day before she was murdered she had been seen in the churchyard wearing green wellies, a blue coat and a scarf which was wrapped around her face. She had been sweeping leaves up around her bench and putting them into piles. She had a blue sleeping bag and a tartan umbrella. A short while before she had been seen walking about in the churchyard with two sticks trying to detect magnetic fields.
She had come to the UK from the Philippines to become a nanny in London. However, in 2005 she became homeless after moving to Wanstead and used to sleep near Redbridge station. She later made the graveyard at St Mary's Churchyard her home. After her murder her body was repatriated to the Philippines where she was given a Roman Catholic funeral.