Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Parents held over children's arson deaths

The parents of six children killed in an arson attack on their home have been arrested on suspicion of murder.
Mick Philpott, 55, and his wife Mairead, 31, have been detained in connection with the attack on the house in Derby.
They are in custody and will be questioned by officers.
The fire broke out at the house, in Victory Road, Allenton, in the early hours of Friday, May 11.
Duwayne Philpott, 13, Jade Philpott, 10, and brothers John Philpott, nine, Jack Philpott, seven, Jessie Philpott, six, and Jayden Philpott, five, all died as a result of the fire.
Derbyshire Police Assistant Chief Constable Steve Cotterill said: "I suspect there may still be people with crucial information who have not yet come forward to speak to us.
"In view of the arrests, I would urge anyone who may have been holding back, not felt comfortable to voice their concerns or not had the confidence, to do so now.
"They have my personal reassurance that we will deal with their information sensitively.
"We still need information to help us in this inquiry. The latest arrests are just one step further in the investigation.
"It is absolutely vital that if you know anything you think could help us, come forward now, do not wait any longer. It is important that we find justice for these six young children."
He added that the investigation would be lengthy, and urged the local community to be patient.
"Although the fire happened more than two weeks ago, this is a complex inquiry and it will take time for us to piece together the events from that tragic evening.
"I know this case has deeply affected the local community and residents want answers as to what happened and why.
"But I would ask them to be patient and to continue to show the excellent support they have given us to date. Our investigations are detailed and painstaking and they will take time."
A 38-year-old man and a 28-year-old woman, who were arrested on suspicion of murder shortly after the fire, were released without charge the following day.
Mr Philpott and his wife faced the media at a news conference five days after the fire.
Parents held over arson deaths
He repeatedly wiped away tears as he thanked those who tried to rescue his children and members of the local community for their support.
Talking to reporters for about two and a half minutes, Mr Philpott repeatedly paused to compose himself and said he and his wife had decided to donate Duwayne's organs for transplant.
Tributes and gifts, which remain outside the house more than two weeks after the fire, are being moved with the family's agreement. They will be put into a nearby church because of the likelihood of rain.

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