Police say the body of a man washed up near Exmouth, who remains unidentified, faces a pauper’s funeral in an unmarked grave if his family cannot be traced.

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An unidentified man washed up near Exmouth in the summer faces being buried in an unmarked grave if his family is not found.

Detectives investigating the death of the John Doe, whose body was found in mid-July near the Exmouth to Lympstone cycle path, close to Lower Halsdon Farm, say several names given to officers by members of the public are currently being investigated by police hoping to identify the unknown man.

Detectives say the moustached man, who is thought to be in his 50s or 60s, could be given a pauper’s funeral if his identity remains a mystery, once his body is released for burial.

Detective Constable Blain Bishop said without an identity, the man faced an unmarked grave for his final resting place.

He said: “It’s a very sad case. We still don’t know who he is. We have had some recent calls in relation to the identity of the deceased. Three names have been given to us recently and we are trying to establish them.

“It’s important to establish his identity for his family and for his own dignity, and to assist the coroner for the inquest.”

Police said the man’s death was not being treated as suspicious.

DC Bishop said any help to identify the man could be the key to cracking a four-month investigation.

“The police would like to thank the public for their continued support,” said DC Bishop. “It’s a long-running investigation.”

The man is described as white, aged approximately in his 50s or 60s, and around five ft eight to six ft tall. He is of medium to stocky build, has short greying hair, similar to a crew cut that is growing out, and a reddy-brown moustache.

The man has a three inch scar on his lower abdomen, which is possibly from an appendix removal.

He was wearing navy Levi jeans with a blue stain on the right hand back pocket, black Reebok trainers, with Reebok written in white along the sole, a black T-shirt, a blue, green and white chequered shirt, black socks, and a chunky black belt with silver engraved trim.

When the man’s body was discovered, he did not have any items of property on him.

Anyone who recognises the description of the man, or knows someone who fits that description and has not been seen recently, is asked to contact Exmouth CID on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111 quoting crime reference number KE/12/1669.

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