Warning: Graphic content that may disturb some readers!

A psychopath lured a troubled young mother back to his home before he killed her and ate her legs. Now, the British police officer that made the shocking discovery of her remains has spoken out.

Former Darlington officer David Davies discovered the torso of Julie Paterson in 1998 while on the hunt for a different missing person.

The story resurfaced on the Crime Investigation UK's channel last night (local time).

Advertisement
Julie Paterson and her brother Michael in their childhood.
Julie Paterson and her brother Michael in their childhood.

Paterson, a mother-of-four, was lured by the cannibal, David Harker, after meeting him in a pub. The mother was often out, going to parties, according to her brother, but suffered from depression and would sometimes disappear for a few days.

Harker allegedly made a good impression on Paterson so the pair had sex before he strangled the young women, raped her corpse and cut her leg off to eat with pasta, garlic and cheese.

Eventually, the cannibal dumped Paterson's torso in a bin bag and chucked it into a garden of a house he thought was derelict.

Around a similar time frame of Paterson's disappearance, Davies was on a search for another missing person when his police dog began barking when he smelled the corpse.

"His head went up in the air and he started to sample the air, or sniff the air," the former police officer said on the crime investigation show.

Former police officer David Davies found the torso when searching for another missing person.
Former police officer David Davies found the torso when searching for another missing person.

"He then jumped up, put his paws up on the wall, started to run to and from, like he was playing a piano, and then he started to bark."

"My initial reaction was that he's probably found a homeless person."

"I called out to see if there was anybody there, no reply, put my arm through the hedge, felt what I now realise was a bin bag, pulled at it, which caused it to split open a little bit, and of course that released the smell of decomposing flesh," Davies revealed.

Advertisement

The woman that lived at the property they were searching told officials that "a group of lads" had thrown the bag over her wall a few weeks earlier.

Harker was caught after boasting to his friends that he had "killed a girl called Julie", but never revealed the location of her body.

When police raided Harker's house they described the scene as something out of Silence of the Lambs. His home was covered in blood but there were no body parts.

Michael and Julie Paterson when they were children.
Michael and Julie Paterson when they were children.

Paterson's death took a massive toll on Alan Taylor, her boyfriend at the time, who murdered his friend John Morrison in 2006 so that he could go to prison in order to kill Harke.

Taylor was convicted of murder and sentenced to life with a minimum 13 years. Three months into his sentence he was found dead in his cell.

Paterson's brother, Michael, revealed that 21 years on from the murder of his sister he still feels tormented that he does not know where the remains of her body are.

"If he was to tell us where Julie's head was, I wouldn't have a problem with him getting parole," Paterson said.

"But he wouldn't, I know he wouldn't say nothing. I know he won't. He enjoys all of this. He does."