Woman charged with businesswoman's murder

A woman has been charged with the murder of a 60-year-old Lancashire businesswoman.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 20th January 2016, 9:32 am
Updated Wednesday, 20th January 2016, 9:34 am
Sadie Hartley was found dead at her home in Helmshore
Sadie Hartley was found dead at her home in Helmshore

Sarah Williams, of Blacon, Chester, is accused of killing Sadie Hartley, who was found dead at her home in Sunny Bank Road, Helmshore, on Friday evening.

The 34-year-old is due to appear at Blackburn Magistrates’ Court.

Ms Hartley, a mother-of-three, was the director of her own medical communications business, Hartley Taylor, based in Knutsford, Cheshire. She also previously ran a company based in Wesham, near Kirkham.

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A post-mortem examination showed Ms Hartley died from multiple stab wounds, according to Lancashire Police.

A spokesman said: “Following consultation with the Crown Prosecution Service we have today charged a woman with the murder of Sadie Hartley in Helmshore.

“Sarah Williams, 34, of Treborth Road, Blacon, Chester, is due to appear before Blackburn Magistrates’ Court today charged with murder.

“A 55-year-old woman from Chester arrested on Monday January 18 on suspicion of murder remains in custody.”

Detectives are continuing to appeal for help tracing several people seen near Ms Hartley’s home on Thursday evening, including the driver of a passing car.

A police spokesman said officers wanted to identify a person seen passing a man as he walked out of Sunny Bank Road on Thursday evening and an unknown person who walked into the cul-de-sac before leaving a few minutes later.

They also want to trace the driver of an “old-style” Renault Clio which was seen arriving in Sunny Bank Road just before 8pm on the same night and driving off moments later.

The investigating team is also keen to hear from anyone with information about people asking for the location of Sunny Bank Road in the days or weeks leading up to the murder.

They said a man and a jogger seen on the road had been identified as local residents.