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Teacher’s estranged husband charged with murdering her and her lover

A teacher’s estranged husband has been charged with the murder of her and her lover.

Helen Hancock, 39, and Martin Griffiths, 48, were both found stabbed to death at a house in Duffield on New Year’s Day Derbyshire Police said.

Rhys Hancock, 39, of Portland Street, Etwall will appear at Southern Derbyshire Magistrates Court tomorrow morning.

Marketing company boss Mr Griffiths, who was a dad-of-two, had only been dating the mum-of-three for six months before their double murder.

The couple spent New Year’s Eve together at her home in Duffield, Derbys, before the tragedy unfolded.

Helen Almey with her estranged headteacher husband, Rhys Hancock
(Image: pixel8000)
The former couple and their three children
(Image: pixel8000)

Police were called to the £400,000 detached property at 4am and found them dead inside with fatal stab wounds.

Martin was a keen runner, mountaineer and snooker player who separated from wife Claire earlier last year.

He met Helen, who split from husband Rhys Hancock, 39, in 2018 and used her maiden name Almey, at a running club.

On Twitter Martin, of Mickleover, Derby, described himself as a “dad and best friend to two beautiful children”.

He had raised thousands of pounds for charity by climbing some of the world’s highest peaks.

Martin Griffiths has been identified as the second victim of the New Year’s day horror
(Image: Derbyshire Police)
Helen Almey was a mum-of-three

In 2017 he spent time in intensive care after suffering severe frostbite while on a mountaineering expedition in Nepal.

His family said today: “Martin was a lovely dad, husband, son, brother and uncle, who had a passion for adventure, running and a love of animals.

“He enjoyed travelling the world, mountain climbing and spending time with his two children. He will be greatly missed.”

Helen’s family also paid tribute to her today, describing her as a “lovely, beautiful, friendly, bubbly and social person.”

Helen Alamy with Rhys Hancock, from whom she was estranged but with whom she owned a house
Rhys Hancock will appear in court tomorrow
(Image: pixel8000)

She was a popular resident of Duffield and was active on the town’s community social media pages and neighbourhood watch.

Jo Lethbridge posted on Facebook: “It really is heartbreaking. She was a lovely woman. My thoughts are with the family and the three kids.”

Caroline Roberts wrote: “Wonderful, genuine, lovely lady and family. Tragic.”

Kate Kozluk added: “Absolutely heartbreaking. A beautiful lady inside and out.”

Helen’s three children, aged nine, seven and four, are being cared for by relatives in Derbyshire.

Helen split from husband Rhys Hancock, 39, in 2018
(Image: pixel8000)

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Derbyshire Police said it has referred itself to the IOPC “due to contact between Mrs Hancock and officers prior to the incident”.

Chief Supt Hayley Barnett, said: “The thoughts of everyone are with the family and friends of Mrs Hancock and Mr Griffiths.

“Our thoughts are also with the Duffield community, which is understandably shocked by this incident.”

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