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Hunt launched for missing woman who was cleared of murder after spending five years in jail

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Police have launched a major hunt for a woman who was cleared of murdering her friend’s boyfriend.

Stacey Hyde was last seen at approximately 4.30pm in the Priorswood area of Taunton, Somerset on New Year’s Eve.

Officers say they are concerned for her safety, and that she may be in an ‘agitated state’.

Ms Hyde, who ‘may be with a man’, sometimes goes by the name of Anastasia Darlison.

She spent five years in jail after being found guilty of the murder of Vincent Francis, 34, in 2010.

The 26-year-old was sentenced to life with a minimum of nine years behind bars, however she was cleared of murder at a retrial in 2015.

The court had heard that Francis was violent and Ms Hyde had acted in self defence when she stabbed him to death.

The original conviction was the quashed, with the Court of Appeal stating new evidence showed Ms Hyde had a mental disorder at the time of the killing.

About an hour before she went missing yesterday, Ms Hyde’s Facebook status was changed from ‘single’ to ‘in a relationship’.

Avon and Somerset Police are now appealing for help to track down the missing woman.

She is described as white, 6ft tall and of slim build with blonde hair.

A police spokesperson said: ‘Stacey was last seen in the Priorswood area of Taunton at approximately 4.30pm.

‘We’re concerned for her welfare and want to find her to make sure she is safe.

‘We believe she may be in the company of a man in his late 20s who is described as being of slim build with short, possibly bleached hair and facial hair.

‘Stacey, who also sometimes goes by the name Anastasia Darlison, may be in an agitated state and we’d advise anyone who sees her not to approach her but to call us immediately.’

Anyone with information on Stacey’s whereabouts is asked to call 999.

Courtesy: metro.co.uk

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