House fire victim was stabbed

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The Independent Online
POLICE investigating the murder of a young mother believe that she was stabbed to death in front of her daughter before the house she was in was set on fire.

The badly burnt body of Karen Hales, 21, was found at a house in Lavenham Road, Ipswich, Suffolk, after firefighters tackled a blaze there on Sunday afternoon. A post-mortem examination revealed that she had suffered multiple stab wounds.

Ms Hales's 18-month-old daughter, Emily, was found unharmed in the blazing kitchen by the fire brigade which was alerted after Ms Hales' father, Graham, called at the house to find it on fire.

Detective Chief Superintendent John Saunders, of Suffolk Police, said detectives were trying to find out what happened to Ms Hales between 3.50pm on Sunday, when she was last seen alive and well by her boyfriend, and 4.40pm, when her father arrived.

'There is no evidence of a break in at this stage, but the whole scene is being worked through,' he said.

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