Nanny murder children to fly back to UK

TWO BRITISH children have been taken into state custody in the United States after their father was charged with the murder of their nanny.

Their mother, from Wiltshire, was last night arranging for the children to fly to England from Connecticut, where theylived with their father, David Taylor. Mr Taylor, 43, a British engineer, is in custody for the first-degree murder of Milena Pitkova, 22, from Slovakia. Ms Pitkova was killed on Tuesday by several blows to the head. There were also signs that she had been strangled.

Mr Taylor began a relationship with Ms Pitkova after divorcing his wife of 15 years, Susan Lemon. Ms Lemon, who now lives in Chippenham, was too distraught to talk about the murder but her partner, David Hollins, said the children, Adam, 14, and Hannah, 11, were being cared for by US social services and would be returning to England soon. "We spent all yesterday contacting the necessary people and making plans. The children are safe and will return home as soon as possible," he said.

Police in the Long Island Sound town of Madison, where Mr Taylor lived with the children and Ms Pitkova, said they were phoned early on Tuesday by a man who said he had just killed someone. Mr Taylor was subsequently arrested. Bail has been set at $100,000.

Local newspaper reports said that Mr Taylor struck Ms Pitkova during an argument, after she wanted to end the relationship. The couple had been living in the US for the pastthree years.

A spokeswoman for the state medical examiner's office said that the autopsy showed Ms Pitkova's skull had been crushed and cut in three places.

The Foreign Office said it was in contact with Mr Taylor and his family, and was co-operating with the US authorities.

Paul Wallace, managing director of Thermapool Europe, whose US parent company employed Mr Taylor, said: "It's certainly not something we would expect him to be accused of and it's not something we would have thought would have happened."

A company spokesman added: "We were concerned that the children were being looked after. We were told they were being looked after by an employee and we thought that this situation was satisfactory."

Mr Taylor's neighbours described him as "a very proper Englishman". Mark Smith said Ms Pitkova "was beautiful, striking, like the image of Pocahontas in the Disney movie".

Staa closed the coffee shop where she worked part-time as a waitress in remembrance yesterday. A colleague, Holly Magee, said Ms Pitkova was devoted to the children. "She loved the children and they loved her," she said.

The Connecticut Department of Children and Families confirmed the two children were in state care yesterday. John Wiltse, director of public affairs, said the department was in contact with Ms Lemon about her children's welfare. "We will be putting a plan together for their future."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?