Devon

Police to canvass town for Barnstaple women witnesses

Forensic examinations are continuing at the house in Barnstaple
Image caption Police believe the house was set on fire after the stabbings

Police are to canvass people in a Devon town centre over the weekend to try to trace witnesses who may have seen two women who were later found stabbed.

The bodies of Deborah Jones and Donna St John were found in a house in Fortmead Close, Barnstaple, following a fire at the property last Sunday.

Police said officers would be out later looking for anyone who had seen or spoken recently to the women.

A man also found at the house is still in hospital in a serious condition.

Officers believe Ms Jones and Ms St John, both aged 35, were killed in the kitchen of the rented property and the house was then set on fire.

Senior Investigating Officer Det Insp Mike West said police had received a good response from some witnesses so far.

He added: "But further information is sought from potential witnesses to piece together the movements of both Deborah and Donna on Saturday evening and during the early hours of Sunday morning".

The force added that enquires were ongoing with their family and friends, who were working with family liaison officers, and examinations of the scene were also ongoing.

A 40-year-old man also found stabbed at the house is under police guard at North Devon District Hospital in a serious but stable condition. He is not under arrest.

Police hope to interview the man, described by officers as a suspect, next week if his condition improves.

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