‘Beautiful and loving’ mother-of-two, 21, murdered by boyfriend, 47, who then took his own life

“Lucy was a brilliant, loving mother to her two young children... nothing will ever fill the heart-breaking hole in our hearts,” her family said

A young mum who was discovered dead at her home was smothered to death by her "bully" boyfriend who then took his own life, police have said.

Lucy Powell, 21, was found unresponsive at a property last Thursday evening (27 January).

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Officers forced their way into the house after concerns were raised by a family member to find the bodies of Lucy and 47-year-old Gregory Duhamel.

A post mortem examination has now revealed Lucy was smothered and died at the scene in Swancote Road, Stechford, Birmingham.

West Midlands Police said detectives believe Duhamel killed Lucy before taking his own life and they are not seeking anyone else in connection with their deaths.

‘She was a brilliant, loving mother’

Lucy Powell, who was discovered dead at her home, was smothered to death by her boyfriend who then took his own life (West Midlands Police / SWNS)

Lucy’s family have now paid tribute to the “caring, beautiful and loving” mother-of-two in a statement.

They said: "Lucy was a kind, caring, beautiful person inside and out and always put a smile on everyone’s face.

"She was a brilliant, loving mother to her two young children.

"She was taken from us way too soon and nothing will ever fill the heart-breaking hole in our hearts. Rest in peace our special girl.

"Loved by all, Lucy will be missed so much.”

‘It’s awful, she was so young too’

Last week neighbours said Lucy appeared to be a "lovely and doting" mother while her partner was described as a "bit of a bully".

One resident, who did not want to be named, said: "It’s awful, she was so young too, younger than us. It’s weird, the age gap they had.”

They added: "She always looked intimidated, like something wasn’t right at all. He looked like a bit of a bully.

"It’s a shame, she’s a young mum with two small kids."

Another neighbour added: "She was lovely and doted on her kids. Always said hello, but she was always much more bubbly when he wasn’t around. It’s tragic."

One woman living nearby said: "We barely saw them. They’ve been here probably 18 months. We first met them when their cat ran up to us when they first moved in.

"They seemed like a nice couple, a bit quiet but you’d see them walking around.”

Police: ‘It’s a truly tragic case’

Chief Superintendent Mat Shaer, Birmingham East Police Commander, said: “The post mortem examinations have confirmed our suspicions: this was a murder-suicide and no-one else was involved in the deaths.

“It’s a truly tragic case and my heart goes out to Lucy’s wider family, friends and of course her two young children.

“We have been working with partner agencies to ensure the children receive all the support and help they need.”

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