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Parents' heartbreak following Australia murder
10:00am Monday 15th October 2012 in News
THE parents of a woman murdered in Australia have spoken for the first time of hearing how their daughter was stabbed to death.
Mum-of-three Paula Louise Conlon, aged 30, was allegedly murdered by boyfriend Aleksander Vojneski on March 27.
She had been seeing the registered schizophrenic for six months.
The 28-year-old has been charged and is awaiting trial for her murder with a next court appearance on December 11.
Mum Sharon Bell, aged 49, was in work when she received a phone call two days later from Cheshire Police.
An officer attended the family home on Lytham Close, Great Sankey, to break the devastating news to her and husband Ian.
“He said she had died and I said ‘no she has not, I was talking to her three days ago,” said Mrs Bell.
“There were so many emotions.
“I always thought if somebody told me something like that I would be kicking and screaming but I just sat there.
“For the next half an hour we were just crying and saying it could not be true.”
Mr Bell, aged 52, said: “It was a big shock to be told that she had died but the first thing you think is she’s had an accident.
“But to be told she has been murdered is just shock on another level.”
Police are still investigating what sparked the fatal confrontation.
A 16-year-old lodger who also lived at the property told of hearing screams and reported seeing Alex running out of the house.
Paula was found the next day at her home in Canberra. She had been stabbed 11 times.
“If I could have one wish it would be to know what happened that night,” said Mrs Bell.
Her and Ian went to Australia a week later for the funeral and to help look after Paula’s daughters Olivia, aged 3, Grace, aged 6, and Holly, aged 12.
The care worker had moved there in March 2003 with husband Scott but the couple later divorced.
The stormy relationship with Alex followed, but friends told Mrs and Mrs Bell she had ended it because he was violent.
They had been back together for a week when she was murdered.
“Paula’s thing was wanting to help people,” said Mrs Bell.
“She was very strong minded and well liked with lots of friends.
“I think she wanted to help him with his condition, because she would help anyone and do anything for anybody.”
SHARON and Ian Bell are appealing for help to lay daughter Paula to rest in her hometown.
A funeral took place at St James’ Church on Wilderspool Causeway in May but her ashes were not buried.
The couple wish to erect a memorial for her at Walton Lea Cemetery but after several trips to Australia for her initial funeral and subsequent court hearings, they cannot afford to fund it.
They say it is costing double as the mum-of-three did not die in this country and need to raise around ? (waiting to hear).
A fundraiser they have organised at the Railway Club on Winwick Road on October 27 has already sold out, and the family are appealing for extra help.
Dad Ian said: “We have never asked anybody for anything before.
“We just want to put Paula, not where she should be, but where we want her to rest.
“Just somewhere we can go, or anyone can go, to put down flowers and remember her.”
To help call Sharon on 07989 842268.