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Children laugh and play in street hours after woman found dead in flats

By Patrick Edrich

Children laughed and played in the street the morning after a woman was found dead in a block of flats.

Emergency services rushed to Vittoria Close in Birkenhead at around 7.15pm on Thursday, May 12 following reports a woman in her 60s had been found in a flat. Paramedics were called to help the woman but she died in her home.

A 51-year-old man, who is known to the victim, was arrested on suspicion of murder and taken into custody for questioning. People in the block of flats were told to not leave their homes while forensic teams worked at the scene.

READ MORE: Police name woman found dead in flat

There was little indication at the Close this morning there had been a swarm of police activity just hours before. A solitary police car was parked at the front entrance next to a well-maintained garden.

Children on their way to school walked in groups or with mums and dads laughing and shouting. People on their way to work rushed past carrying takeaway teas and coffees barely glancing at the block of flats.

Two women who live near the flats stopped in the street to ask each other what happened last night. One later told the ECHO she heard sirens as police speed down the street but thought nothing of it. She said because it's near a main road they hear police sirens all the time. She added: "You never imagine it would be something so close though."

Further up the street Betty and Joanne, a mum and daughter, told the ECHO they came outside last night to a wave of police activity. Betty, 78, said: "I sleep in the front bedroom but I didn't hear anything until I took the bins out ready for them to be collected.

"There they all were - there were police cars and officers everywhere. I woke up my daughter who came out to see. I knew something bad had happened because there were so many.

"We went and woke up our next door neighbour and were all stood outside in our pyjamas watching what was happening. It's very sad though and it worries me - it's too close to home."

A solitary police car remained at the scene this morning (Liverpool ECHO)

As the news filtered out a woman in her 60s had been found dead people began to pay their respects. One woman said: "How awful, a woman in her 60s just like me. It's absolutely terrible."

Merseyside Police remain at the block of flats and enquiries into the incident are ongoing. Officers have appealed to anyone with information to come forward.

Detective Inspector Kevin O’Rourke said: “We are investigating the tragic death of a woman in Birkenhead and have arrested a man, who we can confirm was known to the victim. Our enquiries into the incident are ongoing and if you have any information which could assist our investigation then please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

“We take the issue of domestic abuse very seriously and will continue to work alongside our partners to identify the best way to tackle it. I would encourage anyone who is experiencing domestic abuse to have the courage to report it to us and we will support you in every way we can.

“Similarly I would ask if you are aware of someone who is a victim of domestic abuse – whether that be a friend, family member, colleague or neighbour - please contact us so that we can take positive action and offer them the support that they need.”

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