Alleged Leek murder victim Charlotte Smith 'had been dead for three days'
ALLEGED murder victim Charlotte Smith is believed to have been killed three days before her body was discovered.
The 41-year-old received fatal head and facial injuries from a blunt object on Monday, September 3.
Police found Charlotte's body at her home in Ladderedge, Leek, on Thursday after concerned relatives raised the alarm.
Devendra Singh, who is believed to be Charlotte's husband, has now been charged with her murder.
Call WHITEGATES Today 01782 209935 ..Limited offer. Available only up on production of voucher. Sell your home for £399 plus vat.* #EPC is required to market your home not included in offer.
Terms: *Upfront payment, non-refundable in the event of property remaining unsold, being withdrawn from the market or being sold by another agent, yourself or by any other means.#EPC £62.50 plus vat.
Contact: 01782 209 935
Valid until: Thursday, July 04 2013
He made his first appearance before North Staffordshire Magistrates' Court on his birthday on Saturday.
The 33-year-old, of Ladderedge, will appear before the magistrates again today, when his case is expected to be referred to crown court.
He has been remanded in custody.
During the two-minute hearing on Saturday, he spoke only to confirm his name and address.
It came as the results of a post-mortem examination were released by Staffordshire Police.
A Home Office pathologist has established the cause of death as head and facial injuries, thought to have been caused by a blunt instrument.
Following her death, Charlotte's family released a statement paying tribute to her.
The statement reads: "Charlie was a most precious and much-loved daughter and step-daughter.
"She was a truly beautiful girl, who loved life and laughter. No words can express how we are all feeling. We are totally devastated.
"All of the kind messages from family, neighbours and friends have been most sincerely appreciated."
Friends and relatives have also left flowers outside the semi-detached property in Ladderedge, which remains cordoned off by police.
One note read: "May you rest in everlasting piece. We will miss your raucous laugh".
Another said: "No words can express the sadness felt by so many at your tragic loss."
Charlotte's death has also stunned the local community.
A neighbour, who did not wish to be named, said: "I didn't know Charlotte that well but she was a very happy and bubbly woman.
"Whenever I did see her, she always had a smile on her face.
"Her death was a huge shock and she will be very sadly missed."
Charlotte, who worked at AP Chemicals, in Station Road, Cheddleton, was last seen alive on the morning of September 3, the date on which she is believed to have died.
Scene of crime officers from Staffordshire Police are continuing to carry out inquiries at the property in Ladderedge.
Anyone with information is urged to contact the force on 101, quoting incident number 229 of September 6.
Alternatively, they can call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.