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Man appears in court over murders of mother and daughter

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A man accused of murdering a mother and her daughter has appeared in court.

Margaret Harris, in her 70s, and her daughter Sharon Harris, in her 50s, were stabbed to death at a house near Tonbridge in Kent on Saturday morning.

Mrs Harris’s husband David was airlifted to hospital after being also being stabbed.

Jack Ralph, 28, who lives in the same street, has been charged with two counts of murder and one of attempted murder.

He appeared via video link at Medway Magistrates’ Court in Chatham this morning, and is due before Maidstone Crown Court on Wednesday.

Police at the scene in Hadlow, near Tonbridge in Kent
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Police at the scene in Hadlow, near Tonbridge in Kent
Officers parked outside the property on Carpenters Lane. Pics: Janet Sergison
Image:
Emergency services parked outside the property on Carpenters Lane. Pics: Janet Sergison

Officers were called by paramedics just after 7.40am on Saturday, and found three people suffering from serious
injuries “consistent with a stabbing”.

Neighbours have spoken of their shock following the incident in the “quiet and friendly” village in the Medway Valley.

“We’ve lived here for five years and never heard anything bad happen. It has always been so quiet and a lovely place to be,” said Sophie Moorey-Brown.

A murder investigation has launched after two women dead near Tonbridge
Image:
A murder investigation was launched after two women died near Tonbridge
A man, 28, has been charged with the women's murders
Image:
A man, 28, has been charged with the women’s murders

The 31-year-old added: “We are very shocked and saddened by what we have heard.

“It is such an awful thing to hear anywhere but in our lovely, friendly little village it’s bound to rock us residents even more so”.

Rev Paul White, vicar at the village church, St Mary’s, offered support to anyone affected by the deaths.

He tweeted: “Following a tragic incident in Hadlow earlier today just to let everyone know that St Mary’s will be open and clergy will be available all day on Monday if anyone wanted to speak or simply to light a candle and pray.”

Neighbour Nigel Keogh, a 51-year-old plasterer, and his wife Natalie, 52, said: “It’s quite shocking really. It’s a nice little village.

“We moved from London to get away from all this and it’s right on your doorstep.”

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