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Former soldier arrested for murdering couple

A FORMER soldier was arrested on suspicion of murdering a couple as their children slept upstairs following a row over parking.

Stephen Chapple, 36, and his wife Jennifer, 33, were found with serious injuries in their home in Norton Fitzwarren, Somerset, on Sunday night.

Their two sons – aged five and six – were sleeping upstairs in the house at the time of the horror.

A 34-year-old man was arrested and has since been named as ex-commando royal engineer Collin Reeves, who served in Afghanistan.

A social media snap of him in his uniform shows him wearing The Afghanistan Campaign medal and the Queen’s diamond jubilee medal.

Cops have been granted an extension to continue questioning him.

Another man, 67, believed to be his dad, has been released on bail.

A post mortem found Jennifer died from multiple stabs wounds, while an autopsy is continuing on Stephen.

The couple’s children are now being cared for by Jennifer’s sister at her home nearby.

It comes as heartbroken friends paid tribute to garden centre worker Jennifer and Stephen – a computer teacher at a secondary school.

One pal said: “Make time for your friends. Make that visit to see family. You just never know what could happen tomorrow.”

While another wrote: “Absolutely unbelievable. Cherish your friends and family you really don’t know when it will be too late”.

Floral tributes were also left at the scene today by devastated friends.

One message read: “Jennifer you lit up the street with your smile.

“You and Steve have been such wonderful friends since you arrived in our lives.

“Such a kind and welcoming couple.

“You have left a void that will be felt across all those who knew you.

“Words cannot express how much we’ll miss you both.”

Another said: “Jenni, chick I bloody miss you.

“Thank you for the laughter, joy and craziness you brought into my life.

“And thankyou for sharing your family.”

‘PARKING ROW’

The couple had reportedly been embroiled in a row over parking on their estate before the double killing.

Cops confirmed they had previously been called to deal with rows, believed to be about parking issues.

Stephen and Jennifer’s deaths have been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct because of previous police contact.

Senior investigating officer Detective Inspector Neil Meade said: “What happened to Stephen and Jennifer is utterly heartbreaking 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.”

He added: “This is a tragic incident which has shocked the community and neighbourhood officers are patrolling the area to provide reassurance. Should anyone have any concerns about what happened I’d encourage them to talk to them.”

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