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Man held over double 'axe killing'

A man is being held by police on suspicion of killing a mother and son in their own home.

Neighbours said the victims - named locally as Sally Cox, 43, and Martin Faulkner, 22 - were hacked to death with an axe

The woman's teenage daughter was badly hurt in the attack in Banbury, Oxfordshire, and her 13-year-old sister "severely traumatised", police said.

Armed police arrested Mrs Cox's 45-year-old former partner a few hours later in Wiltshire.

Detectives and forensic investigators found a "horrific" scene when they arrived at the terraced home on Monday morning. The mother and son were discovered in the property in Mold Crescent by police at 6.45am. The victims were apparently murdered inside the house, but two of the woman's daughters managed to flee the scene.

Detective Inspector Steve Duffy said: "As you can appreciate, officers went to the address and were faced with a horrific scene. There were two people obviously dead or very close to death at the scene. All I can confirm is their injuries are consistent with blunt trauma and I can't say if an axe was used but a firearm was not used. The police traced a suspect to an address in Wiltshire and police went to that address and effected an arrest."

Mr Duffy said police had received no previous calls to the address regarding domestic incidents.

A shocked neighbour of the victims, who did not want to be named, said: "All we've heard is there's been a murder and an axe was involved. I know the house but I don't know who lives there."

The family are believed to have lived in the house for a year, Mr Duffy said.

More than 40 police officers have been working on the investigation, as the end-terrace house was cordoned off and a long stretch of the road was closed to traffic and pedestrians in both directions. Police officers were also present at a second house in Mold Crescent, opposite the scene of the attack.