Just days after making another plea for information about the whereabouts of Brett Hall, the Palmerston North mother of the missing man is relieved police have arrested and charged a man with his murder.
Hall was last seen at his home on a Pitangi Track lifestyle block near Whanganui River Rd on May 27, 2011, and the search for him soon became a homicide investigation.
The 49-year-old accused man, who has name suppression, appeared in the Whanganui District Court at the weekend, and was remanded in custody to appear in the High Court on July 24.
Mother Lee Hall, who last week said the sense of loss and uncertainty about what happened to her son became harder to bear every year, was in shock, but relieved by news of the arrest.
At the weekend it had been three years and one month to the day since Brett went missing.
"I'm so relieved that finally something has come from all the investigation."
Hall said the police had promised her they would get to the bottom of the mystery, and she had great faith in them.
When Brett Hall went missing, more than 80 army, police, and search and rescue staff scoured his property and the surrounding bush to find him, but without success.
More than 30 North Island detectives were involved at the height of the investigation.
The officer in charge of the investigation, Detective Senior Sergeant Dave Kirby, said last week the police had spoken to more than 100 people.
"Brett has not been located and police believe he has been murdered and his body dumped or buried somewhere."
He was certain someone knew where it was.
Police did not comment on whether that plea for information had led to the breakthrough in the case, and Hall said she would not talk publicly about any details at this stage.
Kirby thanked the public and media for their help.
"Recent developments as well as information obtained from our inquiries and public appeals resulted in the arrest and charge," he said.
- Manawatu Standard
Will the bus shelter walkway planned for The Square be ready by the end of June?Related story: Covered walkway for Palmerston North bus users by winter