Body of woman (64) found in her home on same night her car was stolen

May Stevens, who was found dead in her Belfast home, was looking forward to becoming a grandmother

 

Detectives are investigating the suspicious death of a 64-year-old woman whose body was found in her home on the same night that her car was stolen.

Mother-of-two May Stevens was found in her Lismoyne Park home in Belfast shortly after 3am on Sunday by officers enquiring about her car, which had been seen a short time earlier on the North Circular Road having failed to stop for police.

The PSNI said her car was stolen between 1.30am and 2am on Sunday, before it was found abandoned in Glenbank Place at around 6.45am.

Officers are investigating a possible link to two other attempted burglaries in the area in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Detective Chief Inspector Peter Montgomery said: “At this stage, we are treating Mrs Stevens’ death as suspicious.

“I can fully understand the shock and devastation felt in the community today following this sickening incident.

“Mrs Stevens was last seen alive in her house late on Saturday evening, and I am awaiting the results of the post mortem.”

Police are keen to trace the movements of the car, a red Hyundai I30, registration NRZ 3370, in North Belfast between 1.30am and 6.45am.

They would also like to speak to anyone who has information about two men who were seen walking away from the car after it was abandoned in Glenbank Place in the direction of the Crumlin Road.

“May touched the lives of many people living in this community as she was a long standing public servant teaching maths to pupils at the Boys’ Model as well as working at Newtownabbey Region College in recent years,” said Mr Montgomery.

He added: “This incident has left the Stevens’ family mourning the loss of a wife, mother and sister. Mrs Stevens was looking forward to becoming a grandmother.”

Anyone with information can contact detectives in Musgrave Street on 101 Ext 17019.

North Belfast DUP MP Nigel Dodds said it was shocking to hear of the woman’s death in circumstances which appear to be connected to the theft of her car.

“I appeal, in the strongest possible terms, to anyone who can assist the PSNI investigation to bring forward whatever information they have. Those responsible must be brought to justice.

“My deepest sympathy goes out to Mrs Stevens’ family circle who have suffered a sudden and terrible loss in very distressing circumstances.

“As a former teacher at the Boys Model School and at Newtownabbey Regional College she will have helped many people who grew up in the North Belfast community and the impact of her death will be widely felt,” he said.

“Lismoyne Park is a quiet residential street. What has occurred will also be very upsetting for all residents in the area,” he added. - PA