Constance Marten and Mark Gordon have been charged with gross negligence manslaughter after the remains of a baby were found in woodland this week. The Crown Prosecution Service authorised Metropolitan Police to charge the pair on Thursday.
It comes 24 hours after Met Police said the remains of a baby had been discovered in a wooded area in Sussex, close to where a huge search operation had been looking. In an update today (March 2), police said they believe those remains may have been there for some time.
A spokesperson for the Crown Prosecution Service said: “The CPS has authorised the Met Police to charge Constance Marten and Mark Gordon with gross negligence manslaughter, concealing the birth of a child and perverting the course of justice.
“These charges arise from their arrest on Monday after a police investigation.”
Barry Hughes, Chief Crown Prosecutor for CPS London North, said: “The CPS has authorised the Metropolitan Police to charge Constance Marten and Mark Gordon with gross negligence manslaughter.
“Constance Marten, aged 35, and Mark Gordon, aged 48, have also been charged with concealing the birth of a child and perverting the course of justice. These charges arise from their arrest on Monday as a result of a lengthy police investigation to establish their whereabouts and that of their baby.
“The Crown Prosecution Service reminds all concerned that criminal proceedings against Constance Marten and Mark Gordon are active and that they have the right to a fair trial.”
Constance Marten and Mark Gordon will appear at Brighton Magistrates Court on 3 March 2023.
Detective Superintendent Lewis Basford speaking to the media earlier today said the baby’s gender was still unknown. A post-mortem is expected to take place in due course.
Speaking on Thursday, Det Supt Basford added: "We are all truly devastated by the outcome and we know this emotion is also being felt here in Brighton and across the country today.”
Police have also referred themselves to the Independent Office for Police Conduct. This is because officers believe the baby’s death occurred during the course of a missing person investigation. Police said the referral was “standard protocol” in such circumstances.
Officers from the Met will remain in the area over the coming days although the scale of police activity has been scaled back.
The couple’s disappearance in January sparked a police investigation and reward for information leading to them being found.