UK

Family member ‘saw knives in bedroom’ of man suspected of killing Gracie Spinks

Gracie Spinks had reported Michael Sellers for harassing and stalking her (Family/PA)
Gracie Spinks had reported Michael Sellers for harassing and stalking her (Family/PA) Gracie Spinks had reported Michael Sellers for harassing and stalking her (Family/PA)

A family member of Michael Sellers saw knives in his bedroom months before he is believed to have killed Gracie Spinks, an inquest has heard.

The knives were spotted on the floor of Sellers’ bedroom at the family home in Sheffield in April 2021 – two months before the 35-year-old is believed to have stabbed Ms Spinks to death in Duckmanton, Derbyshire.

A statement from Detective Constable Daniel Ball, who spoke to Sellers’ family after Ms Spinks was found dead in a field and Sellers’ body was discovered hours later, was read out at an inquest in Chesterfield into her death on Friday.

Dc Ball said Sellers’ mother told him her son was “dying inside” after losing his job at e-commerce firm xbite in January 2021 for harassing his colleague Ms Spinks, 23.

His statement read: “His personality changed. He always looked after himself, went to the gym and kept fit.

“He went on a downward spiral, stopped exercising, stopped caring and started bottling things up.”

Dc Ball also said that a family member saw knives on Sellers’ bedroom floor and told him he could speak to them or a doctor if he needed support.

Sellers “laughed” and said “they can’t sort this out for me”, the inquest heard.

His mother asked him to get rid of the knives and his father warned him police would “throw away the key” if they discovered them.

Dc Ball’s statement, which was read out by coroner Matthew Kewley, also said that Sellers had been on his phone or his laptop a lot more in the year before Ms Spinks’ death, and that he had been seen looking at photos of her.

His mother reportedly told him he needed to “move on” from xbite and Ms Spinks but he said he liked her and wanted to “make things right”.

The inquest also heard that Sellers’ mother found a bag of carrots and apples in his bedroom the day before Ms Spinks was killed – and became concerned the next day when she noticed the bag had gone as she remembered Ms Spinks had a horse.

She reportedly went to search for her son, heading in the direction of Duckmanton, to tell him to “come home” and saw an area in the village was cordoned off, so returned home.

The inquest continues.