Headteacher admits murdering wife and her new lover in New Year’s Day attack

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Rhys Hancock, the former head teacher from Derbyshire accused of killing his estranged wife and her new lover in a New Years Day attack, has pleaded guilty to two counts of murder.

Hancock, 40, appeared to make his plea via video link at Derby Crown Court today (Monday July 6).

Judge Nirmal Shant QC took the unusual step of putting the charges to the defendant herself, due to problems with the court clerk's microphone.

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At 4.26am on New Year's Day, the father-of-three had called police to say he was at his former marital home and admitted murdering his 39-year-old wife Helen Hancock and her 48-year-old lover Martin Griffiths.

Helen Hancock (nee Almey), 39, and Martin Griffiths, 48Helen Hancock (nee Almey), 39, and Martin Griffiths, 48
Helen Hancock (nee Almey), 39, and Martin Griffiths, 48

Helen Hancock (nee Almey), from Duffield, and Martin Griffiths, from Derby, were found at a property in New Zealand Lane, Duffield.

They were found by officers with fatal stab wounds and were pronounced dead at the scene.

A court previously heard how Hancock's mother, Denise Hancock, rang the police to tell them her son had left her address - explaining that the defendant had found out on Boxing Day that his wife had been seeing another man and it had caused him "some distress".

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Hancock’s mother told police her son then left her home, taking two knives with him, and that he seemed "calm" but she was concerned he was going to do something because he had said earlier he "felt like killing them".

Hancock, formerly of Portland Street in Etwall, Derbyshire, will be sentenced at a date to be fixed.