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NZ killer also tried to kill former lover

Tuesday 5 Feb 2013 2:39 p.m.

Chapman had allegedly attempted a similar double killing of himself and his partner Caryl Ussher (pictured) in Auckland in 2009

Chapman had allegedly attempted a similar double killing of himself and his partner Caryl Ussher (pictured) in Auckland in 2009

A 44-year-old New Zealand man who killed his 22-year-old lover in Victoria before taking his own life had allegedly attempted a previous murder-suicide in Auckland before moving to Australia.

The Victorian Coroners Court found today that Neil Chapman, of Lilydale in northeastern Melbourne, stabbed his younger lover Stacy Ramadge to death, and then killed himself.

The gruesome deaths in the laundry of Chapman's home in February 2011 were discovered by his 16-year-old son and his housemate, who found Ms Ramadge's body when he came home from work.

Witnesses earlier saw Chapman forcing a screaming Ms Ramadge into a car in the carpark behind a Lilydale newsagency where she worked while she was on her lunchbreak before the car drove off at high speed.

In his finding, Coroner Iain West said the pair had a relationship that had soured some time in January 2011 when Chapman hired a private detective to conduct surveillance of Ms Ramadge and found that she was also seeing someone else.

Chapman had met Ms Ramadge through her work at the newsagency.

Senior Sergeant Martin Fleming told the court Chapman had been investigated by New Zealand police for allegedly attempting a similar double killing of himself and his 25-year-old partner Caryl Ussher in Auckland in 2009.

Sen Sgt Fleming said Chapman then moved to Australia and the police report on that incident was filed and left in abeyance should Chapman ever return.

* Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Lifeline's 24-hour telephone counselling service on 0800 543 354.

NZN

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