Somerset couple stabbed to death ‘had two cars but one parking space’

The married couple killed in a Somerset village had two cars but one parking space, neighbours have confirmed as police continue to question a suspect. 

Stephen Chapple, 34, and his wife Jennifer, 33, were found dead at their home in Dragon Rise in Norton Fitzwarren, Somerset, on Sunday night while their two sons, aged five and six, slept upstairs. 

A 34-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murder and is being questioned by police in relation to the incident after officers were granted a custody extension. 

The incident is alleged to be linked to a parking dispute between neighbours in the Taylor Wimpey development, where neighbours complained that there simply “isn’t enough of it”.

“It’s horrendous. People park at bad angles, on corners, blocking driveways because the spaces are so limited,” resident Sharon Sedgbeer, 50, said. 

Car park spaces owned by the Chappels

Images taken near the crime scene show two cars parked bumper to bumper in a single parking bay, which is believed to be owned by the Chapples.

Today, neighbours near where the incident took place said they heard an “aggressive” man shouting at the murder scene just minutes before police arrived.

“I heard a man outside. He was shouting loudly and aggressively,” the neighbor said.

“I didn’t look, but I assumed he was drunk – the man’s speech was definitely slurred. He was very sweary. I didn’t hear anything said in return. Just him.”

Parking Murder Map

Avon and Somerset Police said the incident on the Dragon Rise estate would be referred to the policing watchdog due to “prior police contact with those involved”.

Detective Inspector Neil Meade, the senior investigating officer, said: “What happened to Stephen and Jennifer is utterly heart-breaking and I can’t begin to imagine the impact their deaths will have on their two children.

“Family liaison officers are supporting both families and keeping them updated on the progress of our investigation.

“I appreciate there is significant interest in what happened and I’d ask people not to speculate and to think about the impact it may have on the families.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *