Police capture Kyle Clifford after BBC commentator’s wife and daughters killed

Police capture Kyle Clifford after BBC commentator’s wife and daughters killed

Armed police have captured a former soldier wanted in connection with a suspected crossbow triple murder which claimed the lives of a BBC racing commentator’s wife and two daughters.

Detectives said Kyle Clifford, 26, was receiving medical treatment after he was apprehended in the Enfield area of north London on Wednesday afternoon following a major manhunt.

Hertfordshire Police said he was found with injuries and no shots were fired by police in the search for Clifford, who was feared to be armed with a crossbow.

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Meanwhile, tributes flooded in for three members of the “most gentle, beautiful family” killed in a “targeted” attack in their home in Bushey, Hertfordshire.

The BBC confirmed on its news website that the victims were BBC racing commentator John Hunt’s wife Carol, 61, and two of their daughters – Hannah Hunt, 28, a beautician, and her sister Louise, 25, who ran a dog grooming business.

Former soldier Kyle Clifford, 26, was found with injuries and no shots were fired as police apprehended him in Enfield, north London, in connection with the deaths (PA Wire)

Officers were called to Ashlyn Close, Bushey, just before 7pm on Tuesday after neighbours heard screams in the quiet cul-de-sac.

Inside, they found three seriously injured women. Despite the efforts of paramedics, all three family members were pronounced dead at the scene.

Hertfordshire Constabulary hunted overnight for Clifford, from the Enfield area. Detectives had issued a direct plea to Clifford to contact police on Wednesday as they warned members of the public not to approach him and dial 999.

Armed officers were seen raiding a flat in Enfield and swarming a cemetery, with a nearby primary school put on lockdown, before police confirmed he had been located that afternoon.

Footage captured by Sky News appeared to show him being stretchered out of Lavender Hill cemetery before being loaded into an ambulance.

Clifford, who is said to be known to the Hunt family, left the British Army in 2022 following a brief period of service, The Independent understands.

A former army boss told The Sun that he was “immature for his age and had a bit of a chip on his shoulder”, adding that he worked in private security after leaving the force.

In a note to Mr Hunt’s colleagues at BBC 5 Live, the broadcaster described the tragedy as “utterly devastating”.

It read: “The news today about John Hunt‘s family is utterly devastating. Our thoughts are with John and his family at this incredibly difficult time and we will provide him with all the support we can.”

BBC commentator John Hunt and his wife Carol (Supplied)

Shocked residents left flowers at the scene as they spoke of their horror, paying tribute to “the most gentle, beautiful family”, who are understood to have a third daughter.

One tribute read: “Hannah, Louise and Carol, I wish none of this was real. I wish I could hug you all, and tell you how much you meant to me. I wish you could hug each other. Love you forever.”

Another read: “Words cannot express how devastated I am that you’re gone. The most gentle beautiful family. Forever loved.”

A neighbour revealed how she heard screams from the four-bedroom detached family home as the attack unfolded on Tuesday night.

The 46-year-old, who works in the media and lives near the scene but asked not to be named, said “absolute chaos” broke out as armed police put the road into lockdown.

She said: “It was between 6.30pm and 7pm last night and it literally just sounded like kids, somebody screaming, and then it was more shrill and I was like, ‘that’s definitely a woman screaming’, and within 15 minutes, it was absolute chaos.

“We had armed police running down, screaming ‘stay in your house’ … they shut us off and basically put us into lockdown.”

The ‘most gentle, beautiful family’: (from left) Louise, Carol and Hannah Hunt (Handout)

Another neighbour Glyn Nicholas, 77, said the “close-knit” family had lived on the road for almost 20 years, with Louise later setting up her dog-grooming business in an outbuilding in their garden.

He told The Telegraph: “Louise split up with her boyfriend a few days ago and she crashed her car into a telegraph pole because she was so upset coming home. She’s a lovely, caring girl. She runs a dog grooming business in Bushey.

“Her sister Hannah and mother Carol are lovely as well. It’s all so sad. Louise was a sweet, lovely girl. They all were. This is so sad for everyone.”

Locals Simon and Tracey Bowler said the tragedy was overwhelming” and “really sad” as they paid tribute to the family, who would always wave “hello” as they walked their dogs past the house.

Messages of condolence were also posted on social media by figures from the racing world.

ITV racing commentator Matt Chapman wrote on X: “No words needed for what has happened to @HuntyCaller and family today.

“Impossible to comprehend the pain. Just know we are all here for you John. We love you pal – racing loves you.”

The BBC’s former racing correspondent Cornelius Lysaght said the whole racing community sent their “sympathy, love and support” to Mr Hunt.

He said: “There are no words. Like everyone else I feel numb and sick on John’s behalf at such incomprehensible evil.

“Everyone who knows John knows he is the absolute archetypal family man, so proud of them, so it’s impossible to know what he can be going through.”

‘Love you forever’: a tribute left for members of the Hunt family (PA)

Detective Inspector Justine Jenkins from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit confirmed officers are not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.

“Following extensive enquiries, the suspect has been located and nobody else is being sought in connection with the investigation at this time,” she said.

“We have had an overwhelming number of calls and would like to express our gratitude to the members of the public who have contacted us.

“We would still appeal for anyone with information or footage to please contact police directly and refrain from commenting on social media as this could affect the progress of the case. We have set up an information portal where people can submit any information, photos or video footage which they feel could assist us with our investigation.

“This incident will of course be of concern to local residents. Additional local officers will be in the area today so please do speak to them if you need to.”

Flowers left at the scene in Ashlyn Close, Bushey (James Manning/PA Wire)

Home secretary Yvette Cooper said she is being kept fully updated about the inquiry into the “truly shocking” deaths as she vowed to look closely at controls around crossbows.

A Home Office spokeswoman said: “We keep legislation under constant review and a call for evidence was launched earlier this year to look at whether further controls on crossbows should be introduced.

“The home secretary will swiftly consider the findings to see if laws need to be tightened further.”

A forensic tent at the family’s home in Bushey (PA)

Local councillor Laurence Brass, who also lives nearby, told the BBC the area is “a typical leafy British suburb”.

He said: “At about eight o’clock last night, I was watching the football on television, and suddenly a helicopter landed on the lawn outside my flat, which is at the top of this road, and then my phone started going, and I was told that there was a major incident here in Bushey and we should all keep away because there was somebody apparently on the run.

“This is not something that happens in Bushey. We can’t remember a murder in our rather quiet neck of the woods, so [it’s a] terrible shock and our sympathies and prayers and thoughts are with the families of the three women.”

A woman leaves floral tributes at the scene (James Manning/PA Wire)

Fellow councillors Louise Nicolas, Alan Matthews and Paul Richards said they were “deeply shocked” by the tragedy.

“As North Bushey councillors, we extend our thoughts and condolences to their families and all those affected,” they added.

An East of England Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “We were called around 7pm on Tuesday 9 July to a property in Ashlyn Close in Bushey.

“Three ambulances, a rapid response vehicle, an ambulance officer vehicle, the Hazardous Area Response Team, the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance and London Air Ambulance were sent to the scene.

“Sadly, despite the team’s best efforts, three women were pronounced dead at the scene.”

Source: independent.co.uk