DUSTON MURDER INQUIRY: Neighbours pay tribute to ‘nice, down-to-earth lady’ after son is charged over death

Flowers laid outside the former home of Sandra Thomas in Linley Green NNL-150415-161108001
Flowers laid outside the former home of Sandra Thomas in Linley Green NNL-150415-161108001

A Northampton woman who was allegedly murdered by her son has been described by a neighbour as a “nice, down-to-earth lady”.

Sandra Thomas, aged 57, died of a head injury at her home in Linley Green, just off Whernside Way, in Duston.

I got on really well with her and used to see her walking her dog, Sky, a lot.

She was found by police at 2am on Tuesday.

Her son, 32-year-old David Love, has been charged with her murder and has been remanded in custody.

A former neighbour of Ms Thomas, who wishes to remain anonymous, said: “I’ve known her ever since I moved here last May.

“She recognised me because I look a lot like my mum and they were friends – she said she had known me since I was a baby.

“She showed me around the area and told me about it and who lived where.”

“I got on really well with her and used to see her walking her dog, Sky, a lot.

“Every now and again she would stop by my gate for a quick chat or a cigarette,” she added.

Ms Thomas lived on the bottom floor in a building of four flats.

Flowers have already been laid by friends and neighbours beneath one of her windows.

The neighbour said: “She didn’t mix with that many people but she was a nice lady and very down to earth.

“She got on very well with some of the people in her building and often spent time with her grandchildren.

“I barely saw her at all over the last few months,” she added.

Northamptonshire Police have cordoned off an area near the property and are continuing forensic investigations in the flat.

A spokeswoman said that a post mortem examination of Ms Thomas’ body at Leicester Royal Infirmary this week confirmed that she had suffered a fatal head injury.

Love, of Overslade Close in Northampton, appeared, in Northampton Magistrates’ Court yesterday to face a charge of murder.

On the day, Ms Thomas’ body was found, nearby resident Joy Peters, 57, of Linley Green, told the Chron: “I’ve lived here all my life, it’s a nice area with a lot of families round here.

“We all keep an eye out for each other round here.”

Another resident, Claire Stephenson, added: “We have the odd incident round here, but I’ve never known anything like this before.”