6th December 2021

Mum-of-two dies from multiple stab wounds in village near Taunton

Jennifer and Stephen Chapple have died following an attack in Norton Fitzwarren on Sunday night. Two men have been arrested on suspicion of murder. One has been released under investigation.

A post-mortem examination confirmed Mrs Chapple died from multiple stab wounds.

Investigations into Mr Chapple’s cause of death are ongoing.

Det Insp Neil Meade, of Avon and Somerset Police, said: “What happened to Stephen and Jennifer is utterly heart-breaking and I can’t begin to imagine the impact their deaths will have on their two children.

“This is a tragic incident which has shocked the community.”

Tributes have poured in to the couple since news of their deaths emerged.

Mr Chapple taught computing at the nearby West Somerset College. Headteacher Gregg Mockridge said he will be “sadly missed”.

“Steve was a fantastic colleague at West Somerset College, a brilliant teacher that cared deeply about the students in his care,” he said.

Mrs Chapple worked in the coffee shop at a garden centre in the village, where staff said they were “devastated” at the loss of their “much-loved friend”.

Taunton MP Rebecca Pow said it was “absolutely tragic and shocking” to hear the news.

She said: “It’s a very close knit community so it is really devastating news. I’m sure it would have shaken them to their foundations.”