/Estranged husband charged with murdering ex and her lover in New Years attack

Estranged husband charged with murdering ex and her lover in New Years attack

An estranged husband has been charged with murdering his ex wife and her lover who were found stabbed to death at a house in the early hours of New Year’s Day.

Rhys Hancock, 39, has been charged with killing Helen Hancock and Martin Griffiths. They were found fatally injured at an address in the village of Duffield , Derbyshire.

Hancock, of Etwall, Derbyshire, will appear at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates’ Court in Derby on Friday.

Mrs Hancock, also 39 and from Duffield, and father-of-two Martin Griffiths, 48, from Derby, were discovered at a detached property after officers were called at 4.11am.

Helen Hancock with her estranged husband Rhys
(Image: Internet Unknown)

Mr Griffiths and Mrs Hancock, whose maiden name was Almey, were pronounced dead at the scene.

The force has also referred itself to the Independent Office for Police Conduct after it emerged Helen had called officers prior to being killed.

Heartbroken family members have paid tribute to “beautiful and bubbly” Helen and adventure-mad Martin, a father-of-two.

Helen’s family said in a statement: “The family are devastated at the loss of Helen who was a lovely, beautiful, friendly, bubbly and social person.

“We would like to thank people for allowing us privacy at this most difficult of times.”

Martin Griffiths was described as a “lovely dad” who had a “passion for adventure, running and a love of animals”
(Image: Internet Unknown)

Martin’s distraught family members added: “Martin was a lovely dad, husband, son, brother and uncle, who had a passion for adventure, running and a love of animals.

“He enjoyed travelling the world, mountain climbing and spending time with his two children.

Tragic Helen Hancock who used her maiden name Almey
(Image: UGC)

“He will be greatly missed. We would also like to ask that people respect our privacy and allow us space to grieve as we attempt to come to terms with his death.”

Derbyshire Police officers and forensic teams remained at the scene today doing finger-tip searches and conducting door-to-door enquiries.

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Chief Superintendent Hayley Barnett, said: “The thoughts of everyone at Derbyshire Constabulary are with the family and friends of Mrs Hancock and Mr Griffiths.

“Our thoughts are also with the Duffield community, which is understandably shocked by this incident.

“You will see officers in the area throughout today as the investigation continues and I would urge you to speak to them about any concerns you may have.”

The scene in Duffield, Derbyshire, after two people were found dead in a house
(Image: PA)

PE teacher Helen, who had reverted to her maiden name Almey, had previously shared the £400,000 property with her estranged headteacher husband, Rhys Hancock.

Neighbours had previously spoken of how Helen had been “finally getting her life back together”.

Her children aged nine, seven and four were not believed to have been in the house at the time of the attack.

Police forensic officers at the scene where a tent has been erected outside a property in New Zealand Lane, Duffield
(Image: Anita Maric / SWNS)

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