Woman charged with murder of Sadie Hartley
Sarah Williams, left, is accused of murdering Sadie Hartley
Sarah Williams, 34, is accused of stabbing the mother of two to death at her home last Thursday night.
Ms Hartley’s long-term partner Ian Johnston, 54, a ski instructor and ex-firefighter, was questioned by officers, although he is not a suspect.
Ms Williams, from Blacon, Chester, wore a patterned shirt, grey trousers and black pumps for the three-minute hearing at Blackburn magistrates court yesterday.
She spoke only to confirm her address and date of birth before being remanded in custody.
Williams covers her face as she appears in court on murder charges
The accused, who was arrested on Saturday, is due to appear at Preston Crown Court tomorrow.
Detectives raided her buy-to-let property in Leasowe, Wirral, on Sunday, ripping up floorboards, searching garden bins and removing computers and phones.
Another woman, aged 55, was questioned by police on Monday.
Ms Hartley, 60, was found stabbed to death in the hallway of the £450,000 rental property she shared with Mr Johnston in the village of Helmshore, Lancashire, on Friday night.
Sadie with long-term partner Ian Johnston
She is thought to have been attacked after answering the door.
Ms Hartley had been booked on a flght to Geneva last weekend to join Mr Johnston who was in Switzerland training military personnel.
She suffered a number of knife wounds to her arms and hands and was repeatedly stabbed in the body. Her two children – Harry, 23, and Charlotte, 22, from a previous marriage – are said to be “totally bereft”.
Ms Hartley, a director at medical communications firm Hartley Taylor, met Mr Johnston almost a decade ago. He has a daughter with an ex-wife. Ms Williams works in sales for Crystal Ski Holidays, based in an office at an indoor ski slope in Manchester.