Tragedy as Sarah Payne’s father found dead in Kent

Sarah Payne's father Michael Payne has been found dead after a long battle with alcoholism.

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by Fiona Day |
Published on

Sarah's father was found dead at his home in Maidstone, Kent.

Michael's eldest son Lee, 27, paid tribute to his father on social media, writing: "Dad, you had your demons and troubles but you had a good heart and was a decent man.

"I hope now you have found peace at last! RIP, you will be missed. We are all heartbroken."

His 19-year-old daughter Charlotte wrote: “Heartbroken to say the least. No matter what happened and how many mistakes we all made.

'”You will always be my daddy.

“I'm sorry I couldn't save you dad. I hope you have finally found your peace and happiness.”

Mr Payne turned to drink when his daughter, Sarah, was abducted and murdered by paedophile Roy Whiting in 2000.

Sarah’s abduction sparked a massive manhunt, and her tragic murder made headlines around the world.

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Three years after her death, Michael and wife Sara Payne split up.

Michael and Sara in 2000
Michael and Sara in 2000

Sara was pregnant with the couple’s fifth child during their split.

The couple campaigned for ‘Sarah’s Law’, a rule which allows guardians to contact police to find out if a new partner or neighbour has a history of child sex offences.

Michael’s ex wife admitted that she felt suicidal after suffering a stroke in 2008.

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She said: “For a moment as I lay there I wondered if this was the point when Sarah and I would be reunited,' she said afterwards.

“I chose to live. When you've lost a child that's a hard thing to come to terms with.”

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