Essex murder suspect still being quizzed

A MAN suspected of stabbing his wife to death in front of their children was still being questioned by police last night. Anthony Sweeney was arrested after allegedly attacking his wife, Lisa, 34, in their Colchester home.

A MAN suspected of stabbing his wife to death in front of their children was still being questioned by police last night.

Anthony Sweeney was arrested after allegedly attacking his wife, Lisa, 34, in their Colchester home.

A major manhunt was launched after the drama at the first floor flat in the Balkerne Heights development on Wednesday afternoon where the couple lived with their seven children.

Mr Sweeney was arrested near to his former home about five miles away in the village of Birch and brought in for questioning.


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The scene at Henry Laver Court last night remained sealed off and residents were only allowed back into their homes with police escorting them.

Natalie Driscoll lives directly above the Sweeney family and was unable to get back into her home until 30 hours after the incident, which happened at about 1.45pm on Wednesday.

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The 25-year-old was only allowed back inside the second-floor home she shares once she had given her name and address to officers.

Speaking afterwards she said the steps inside the communal part of the building were covered in blood and bloody footprints, leaving her upset.

Miss Driscoll, who works for Pyramid Recruitment Services in Colchester High Street, said: “There is still lots of blood all over the stairs leading up from the car park below.

“It is really upsetting and I cannot stop thinking about the poor children and what they must be going through.

“I did not know the family, but you would always see the kids looking out of the window, running round and having fun.”

Police officers stood guard at the entrance to the flat, at the underground car park which leads directly into the building, and at the Balkerne steps which lead towards the nearby shopping complex.

During the day people stopped to lay flowers outside the couple's flat and spoke of their shock at events.

Neighbours have described how they saw Mrs Sweeney and children shopping in the town just hours before she died.

Lorna King, 38, said: “Everyone around here is a family - all our kids play with theirs. I can't believe it. I'm really in shock”.

Efforts were being made last night to contact members of the dead woman's family.

Detectives launched a manhunt after a suspect went on the run - they initially said they were looking for a man in his 30s or 40s and the force's helicopter was used to sweep the area.

Mr Sweeney was arrested just over an hour later.

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