29/04/2005

Police granted more time to question Abigail suspect

Surrey police have been granted more time to question a 25-year-old man in connection with the stabbing of Abigail Witchalls last week.

The man was arrested on Wednesday evening in Croydon, south London and is being held in custody at Staines police station. Police will now be able to question him until Saturday morning.

Yesterday, forensic experts conducted a search of the house where the suspect is believed to have lived.

Abigail Witchalls, 26, was attacked as she returned home from a mothers and toddlers meeting with her 21-month-old son Joseph, in Little Bookham, Surrey, last Wednesday. The attacker followed her down a lane and held a knife to her son’s throat before stabbing Abigail in the neck.

Abigail was left paralysed in the attack, but is slowly beginning to improve. She conducted interviews with police earlier this week from her bed in St George’s Hospital in Tooting, south London, during which she provided them with details of the attack and a detailed description of her attacker. Although she has been unable to speak since the attack, Abigail was able to communicate with police by mouthing words and blinking.

Abigail’s description of the attacker enabled police to rule a 28-year-old man, who was arrested last week, out of the case. A 29-year-old woman who was arrested with him had earlier been ruled out of the investigation.

Police officers are reportedly on guard at the hospital.

Police are preparing a video identity parade to show Abigail to help identify her attacker, but when it takes place will be dependent on Abigail’s condition.

Police have received more than 400 calls about the attack on Abigail, which happened in an area reportedly regarded to be one of the safest in England.

Police have described Abigail’s attacker as “an extremely dangerous offender”.

(KMcA/SP)

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28 April 2005
Police arrest man in Abigail case
A 25-year-old Surrey man has been arrested in connection with the attack of Abigail Witchalls, police have confirmed. Surrey police confirmed that the man had been arrested last night, but said that the arrest was “only one line of inquiry” and said that police were still following up other information.
27 April 2005
Hundreds of calls received in Abigail case
Police have confirmed that over 300 calls have been received with information regarding the stabbing of Abigail Witchalls last week, following a fresh appeal launched yesterday. Mrs Witchalls, 26, who remains in St Georges Hospital in south London following the attack, spent two days this week helping police build a description of her attacker.
26 April 2005
Abigail’s attacker held knife to son’s throat
The man who stabbed young mother Abigail Witchalls in the neck first held a knife to the throat of her 21-month-old son Joseph, police said. Mrs Witchalls, who is still in St Georges Hospital in south London, following the attack in Little Bookham, Surrey, last Wednesday, gave her statement to the police yesterday.
04 May 2005
Abigail transferred to spinal injuries unit
Abigail Witchalls, the young mother who was stabbed in the neck in a horrific attack two weeks ago, has been transferred to a specialist spinal injuries unit. The 26-year-old had been in St George’s Hospital in Tooting, south London since the attack, which left her paralysed.
10 June 2005
New witness in Abigail stabbing case
Police have confirmed that a new witness has come forward in the investigation into the stabbing of Abigail Witchalls. The development emerged after Abigail, who is still being treated in hospital following the attack in April, had failed to pick out suspect Richard Cazaly in a photo identity parade.