A murder hunt was under way last night after a mum was found dead in the home she shared with her three young children.worryFriends and neighbours wept as they laid flowers and cards outside the house of 42-year-old Debbie Wilkinson. The self employed hairdresser was married with three young children, the eldest of whom is only 14. But she was apparently living alone in the property with her children when tragedy struck.

Last night the children were being cared for by relatives as a painstaking forensic examination of the semi-detached house continued. Police were conducting house to house inquiries and the crime scene remained cordoned off and under police guard. A postmortem revealed she had died from a head injury.

It is understood Mrs Wilkinson may have been dead for 24 hours before her body was found in the home on a modern housing development in Hemlington, a suburb of Middlesbrough, around 7pm in Friday.

A 73-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of murdering the attractive blonde and released on bail pending further inquiries.