A murder probe has been launched following the discovery of a woman’s body in Co Londonderry.
Police in Northern Ireland believe Ludmila Poletelova, 61, died following a “vicious attack” at her home off Main Street in Limavady.
She is described as a Latvian national who had lived and worked in the town for a number of years.
Her body was found on Friday. A post mortem has since established she died as a result of a number of blows to the head.
Detective Chief Inspector Neil McGuinness said: “Her family have been informed and our family liaison officers are supporting them at what is obviously a shocking and horrific time for them.”
He said Ms Poletelova had not been seen by friends or neighbours since April 19, and police are working on retracing her movements over recent days and scouring CCTV footage from shops and businesses in the area.
Mr McGuinness said this was a “vicious attack on a woman in her own home – a place where she should have been safe and secure”.
“I want to reassure the local community that we are working round the clock to apprehend the perpetrator,” he said.
“Members of the public will see a greater police presence in the area as a team of detectives carries out investigations close to the property and in Limavady town centre, today and over the weekend. We will have more officers on the ground and mobile patrols in the area.”
The detective also made an urgent appeal to the public for information.
“Were you walking or driving in the Main Street area of Limavady any time between last Monday morning, 19th April and the afternoon of Friday 23rd April? If you were and you have dashcam footage or saw any suspicious or unusual activity in the area, it is vitally important that you get in touch with police,” he said.
“You can contact us with information by calling 101 and quoting reference number 1073 of 23/4/21.You can also make a report online, using the non-emergency reporting form via http://www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/. Or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at http://crimestoppers-uk.org/.”
Sinn Fein MLA Caoimhe Archibald said: “There is shock in the local community following the discovery of the body of 61 year-old Ludmila Poletelova in a flat at Lodge Court in Limavady on Friday.
“My thoughts and sympathies are with her family, friends and loved ones at this time.
“The PSNI have now launched a murder inquiry and I would encourage anyone with information which can help to get in contact with the police.”