'Angela Was in Fear of Her Life. She Went to the Police Two Days before She Was Brutally Killed' Ex-Boyfriend Hunted in Woods

The Mirror (London, England), May 28, 2011 | Go to article overview

'Angela Was in Fear of Her Life. She Went to the Police Two Days before She Was Brutally Killed' Ex-Boyfriend Hunted in Woods


Byline: TOM PETTIFOR

LIVING in terror of what her abusive ex-boyfriend was planning to do, Angela Hoyte went into her local police station and begged for protection.

Four days later the police watchdog has launched an investigation after the Red Cross worker was found strangled in her own home.

And last night cops were hunting for Martin Collett, 35, in woodland just 10 minutes from where Angela, 34, lived and died.

On Friday last week after being threatened Angela pleaded for help, but it was only after her twin called from Canada saying she instinctively knew something was wrong that her door was broken down and her dead body found on Tuesday night.

Identical twin Ami Watanabe was troubled by her sister's "on-off" relationship with Collett, and was glad that Angela was trying to get a restraining order after he allegedly defaced her Facebook account.

Collett, a Doctor of Philosophy, is believed to have grown increasingly abusive towards Angela last week when she told him their relationship was over after she returned from a three-month trip to Pakistan.

Speaking from the family home in Ontario, Canada, Ami said: "She was supposed to call us and tell us how it went. We were immensely worried. I knew something was wrong. Call it twin instinct. I know my sister."

She said of Collett: "He had a terrible temper. And we warned her. But she just thought she could handle it. She thought she could handle anything.

"She was a beautiful, lovely Canadian girl in London working her dream job. We're all devastated."

The Independent Police Complaints Commissioner Sarah Green said yesterday: "The IPCC is investigating Hertfordshire Police's response to a report of harassment made at Hatfield Police Station on the afternoon of May 20, 2011.

"The woman who made the allega-Angela Hoyte, was subsequently murdered and there is an ongoing police operation to trace her former partner."

Yesterday search teams were hunting for the suspected killer in the grounds of Hatfield House, in Hatfield, Herts - 10 minutes from Angela's home, where there have been a number of sightings of a man matching Collett's description.

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Ross, leading the investigation, said: "I appeal to Mr Collett to give himself up to police or ring and speak to one of my detectives to arrange to come and see us."

DCI Ross said the couple had been in an "on-off" relationship for several years but had split up recently and Collett, originally from West Yorkshire, is thought to have stayed at a number of addresses in the area.

He said: "At the moment he is the one and only suspect, we awre not looking for anyone else.

"From the investigations I have done he doesn't seem to pose a risk to the general public, it's one instance between the two of them, I urge anyone who sees him to ring us up immediately."

DCI Ross, who confirmed that Collett rents out a property in Southtion, ampton, refused to comment on claims that Angela had approached police about getting a restraining order against her former partner shortly before her death. DCI Ross said: "I cannot comment on that, but part of our investigation will be looking at their relationship."

A forensic postmortem examination has been carried out on the charity worker's body, but police are not revealing the results for operational reasons.

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