Tue, Aug 16, 2011 - Page 6 News List

Six die in Jersey stabbing spree

ISLAND JOLTED:Two women, two men and two children were among the victims in St Helier. Earlier this year, police said crime had fallen to its lowest level in 10 years

The Guardian, LONDON

Police are investigating the deaths of at least six people, including two children, who were killed in a knife attack at an apartment in St Helier, Jersey.

A 30-year-old man was in police custody at Jersey general hospital on Sunday night, where he is recovering from surgery after the incident in the afternoon in a residential area close to the town center.

The victims were two women, two men and two children who are believed to be Jersey residents, but whose identities have not been disclosed. One of the women died from her injuries after undergoing surgery at the same hospital.

Police were called to a flat in Victoria Crescent, St Helier, just after 3pm after reports of a multiple stabbing.

A witness, Andre Thorpe, said he believed all the victims were members of the same family and that two ambulances attended the scene.

“Then four or five police vehicles came,” he said. “They were trying to access a private house in the crescent. It was an old Victorian terrace, a lot of them are split into flats. I saw police come running out with a child, it was a small child, I just saw the legs. They went off in an ambulance.

“When the paramedic came back her shirt was covered in blood,” he said.

He said that the incident happened in a secluded area and not on a main road, adding: “You have to drive up a dead end to get in, you would not happen to be passing.”

“I was in the area collecting a friend’s car. I was first aware something was happening when I saw people looking out for the ambulances as I walked up the road,” he said.

Forensic officers were soon at the scene, with uniformed officers and detectives.

The head of crime services, Stewart Gull, who is leading the investigation, said: “Clearly this complex investigation is in its very early stages as we try to establish exactly what happened ... We are mindful, too, of the impact of any such serious and tragic incident on the local community, and we have police officers in the area to support the investigation and local people.”

Crime in Jersey has fallen to its lowest level in the past 10 years, according to figures issued by police on the island earlier this year.

The figures for the first six months of this year showed that violent crime was down by 20 percent.

Nine out of 10 adults in Jersey considered their neighborhood to be very or fairly safe, last year’s Jersey annual social survey found.

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