A 58-year-old woman appears to have brutally murdered her mother-in-law, 61, in Limassol and then killed herself by overdosing on pills, police said on Tuesday.
Christakis Charalambous, the perpetrator’s husband and son of the victim, 44, entered the family’s house shortly after 2pm to the sight of his mother lying dead on her bed, with her head bashed in.
His shock led him outside, frantically screaming for help.
Neighbours responded by calling the police, who arrived at the scene and found his mother, 61-year-old Evanthia Charalambous, lying dead in her bed and his wife, 58-year-old Zinaida Charalambous, sitting dead in a chair.
On the floor next to the wife, police found a bottle of pills.
Further investigation revealed a blood-stained hammer that had been thrown in a trash-can in the garden.
Head of Limassol CID confirmed this was the murder weapon.
Christakis Charalambous suffered a nervous breakdown and was taken to Limassol General for treatment.
The family was being observed by Welfare Services. Evanthia Charalambous had health issues, while her daughter-in-law faced serious mental-health issues.
Neighbours claimed the tragic incident was “more or less predictable”, given the long history of systematic abuse Christakis and Evanthia suffered at Zinaida’s hands.
They said she had attacked her husband, wielding a knife, two years ago.
According to neighbours’ reports, both the police and welfare services had been informed of the goings-on at the Charalambous home, but hardly any interest was shown.
Coroners Nicolas Charalambous and Sofoclis Sofocleous examined the scene, reporting that Evanthia died of heavy head injuries, while the 58-year-old had no bruises or lacerations on her body. Her cause of death will be determined once a post-mortem is conducted.
Police believe the case to be an incident of murder, followed by the perpetrator’s suicide.
Limassol CID continues to investigate.