By Humphrey Carter
THE man accused of fatally stabbing his ex-partner and mother of his two children in Palma while thousands of happy families watched the parade of the Three Kings on Thursday night will appear in court this morning.
45 -year-old prison inmate Juan Manuel Gutierrez had only been released on compassionate leave to spend some time with the two children he shared with the victim. He was due to report back tomorrow.
What is more, the victim, 27-year-old Frenchwoman Marie Margot Sumi, even went to prison to collect Gutierrez before taking him home to the house she shared with her grandfather in the Hostalets neighbourhood of Palma and heading off to work as usual. Neighbours and local residents, many of whom either saw the stabbing or heard the screams, were still in shock yesterday. Some spoke of how Gutierrez had spent the afternoon alone, waiting for Sumi to finish work, wandering around the neighbourhood. He is understood to have popped in to a few bars but drank nothing more than coffee. Sumi returned home from work just after 6pm and their two children aged three and five years were packed off with the grandparents to watch the Three Kings' parade. At around 9pm neighbours claim to have heard the couple arguing and loud shouts coming from Sumi's house.
The argument is believed to have escalated and at around 9.25, the arguing couple spilled out into the street and Gutierrez apparently stabbed Sumi who collapsed to the ground in a pool of blood. One of the neighbours rushed out and attempted to challenge Gutierrez but the suspect, clutching the murder weapon, threatened the neighbour's life and then fled the scene of the crime. He did however hand himself over to the police in the early hours of yesterday morning.
The couple have been separated for over 18 months and Sumi is believed to have been involved in a new relationship for quite some time. However whether this was the cause of the fatal argument remains to be confirmed. Neighbours said that Gutierrez “has a strong character” and that this was not the first time the two had been heard arguing.
The investigation continues.

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