A post mortem carried out on the body of a woman found murdered in Bosham has revealed she died from significant head and facial injuries.
The woman believed to be 55-year-old Valerie Graves was found dead in a property in Smugglers Lane, on Monday December 30.
She was house sitting with three other members of her family over the Christmas period, while the owners of house were away on holiday.
Detectives from Surrey and Sussex Major Crime Team launched a murder inquiry on Monday.
The examination took place on Wednesday (1 January). She has yet to be formally identified.
Police are continuing to appeal for witnesses to come forward and investigations are continuing.
Detective Chief Inspector Jon Fanner said: ‘The post mortem has revealed the cause of death but we are still keeping an open mind as to the motive.
‘We are appealing for witnesses who may have seen anyone acting suspiciously or anything unusual in the area from late afternoon on Sunday 29 December to around 10am on Monday 30 December.
‘Please call us if you know anything, no matter how insignificant you might think it is. It could be important to the investigation.’
Anyone with information should ring 101 or email firstname.lastname@example.org quoting Operation Ensign or alternatively phone the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.