Police have launched a double murder investigation after two women were found dead outside a house in the village of Crawley Down in West Sussex.
Officers arrested a man on suspicion of murder after finding him seriously injured inside the home on Sunday morning. The alleged attacker was taken by ambulance to the Royal Sussex County Hospital, Brighton.
More than 10 police cars and half a dozen ambulances were called out to the quiet residential neighbourhood shortly after 10.15am.
Reports initially suggested a knife had been involved in the attack, but Detective Chief Inspector Alex Geldart said: “In response to media speculation I wish to make it absolutely clear that this is not a knife crime.”
A neighbour said they had heard someone yell “I’m going to kill you” during an argument prior to the deaths of the two women.
An ex-police officer neighbour said his friend, who lives opposite the house where the attack occurred, heard shouting inside before people ran out of the house.
He said: “There was a domestic dispute or argument that was going on. There was shouting and threats made and the police were called.
“The neighbour that I know heard shouting and swearing and heard, ‘I’m going to kill you’.”
DCI Geldart, of the Sussex and Surrey major crime team, said police believed the killings to have been “an isolated incident, with no ongoing risk to members of the public”.
She added: “This is a fast-moving investigation which will see significant police resources deployed to the scene for the forseeable future. We are grateful for the support and patience of the local community while we conduct our enquiries.
“My thoughts are very much with the friends and family of the two women who have sadly lost their lives.”
The street remains under lockdown with police cordons set up at each end of the road on Saturday night. Forensics officers are working busily around a tent covering one of the bodies in the middle of the street.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to report online or call 101, quoting Operation Deanland.
Alternatively, the independent charity Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Additional reporting by SWNS
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