Woman found dead in Qormi warehouse likely murdered at Swieqi garage

‘A hatchet could have been used’

Investigators believe that Eleanor Mangion Walker, 33, was likely killed inside these garages in Swieqi. Photo: Mark Zammit Cordina

Investigators believe that Eleanor Mangion Walker, 33, was likely killed inside these garages in Swieqi. Photo: Mark Zammit Cordina

Forensic analysts are scouring a van believed to have been used to transport the corpse of the 33-year-old woman found in a warehouse in Qormi last Sunday.

The white van, which is one of three vehicles belonging to prime suspect Andrew Mangion, could not be located initially but was found in a less-frequented street in San Ġwann yesterday morning.

Sources said that investigators believe the van was used to transport the lifeless body of Eleanor Mangion Walker after she had been killed with a blow to her head.

The police are basing their investigations on the theory that Ms Mangion Walker was killed in one of the two garages the couple had close to their residence in Swieqi and that the body was then transported to the Qormi warehouse in the van.

Traces of blood were found inside one of the garages

Sources said traces of blood were found inside one of the two garages, which are now being monitored by the police around the clock as investigations into the macabre murder of the mother of a nine-year-old girl continue.

Investigations are, until now, revolving around gathering and preserving forensic evidence in a bid to piece together a clear picture of what happened.

It has been established that Ms Mangion Walker was last seen alive on Saturday and that the murder most probably happened on the night between Saturday and Sunday.

According to the autopsy, Ms Mangion Walker died due to grievous head injuries inflicted by a hard object.

However, although the autopsy ruled out that the injuries had been caused by a sharp object, police are not excluding the possibility that a weapon similar to a hatchet could have been used.

The murder weapon has not yet been found.

Ms Mangion Walker’s corpse was found on Sunday evening in a plastic bag partly hidden by some wooden pallets in an unused warehouse in Triq il-Kummerċ, Qormi, after Mr Mangion’s close relative reported the murder to the police. Meanwhile, psychiatrists at Mount Carmel Hospital have not yet given the police the green light to continue interrogating Mr Mangion in connection with his estranged wife’s murder, sources told this newspaper.

The sources said that Mr Mangion, a 40-year-old handyman, had been transferred to the seclusion ward, usually reserved for the more acute psychiatric patients.

He is under “constant watch” at the hospital, not only by psychiatrists and nurses – but also a police officer who is guarding his room.

He was admitted to the psychiatric hospital after turning himself in to the police almost two days after the gruesome discovery.

Sources said that it was common practice for investigators to refrain from questioning a person who is recovering in hospital until experts have given their clearance to do so.

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