1. ITV Report

Mother's plea to find out who killed her daughter 25 years ago

Karen Hales and baby daughter Emily.

A mother has made an emotional appeal to try and find out who killed her daughter 25 years ago.

Karen Hales was 21 when she was stabbed to death at her home in Ipswich in 1993.

Her mother Geraldine Hales has joined with Suffolk Police to appeal for fresh information about her murder.

  • Click to watch a report by ITV News Anglia's Malcolm Robertson

Geraldine Hales described the last 25 years of not knowing what had happened to her daughter as "torment".

"We just need to know why, we don't know why," she said.

"I deal with it a bit better than my husband. I think he doesn't deal with it very well because he found her body burning and with stab wounds. He's seen all that."

Karen's mother Geraldine Hales says the last 25 years has been a 'torment'. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Karen Hales was living in Lavenham Road in Ipswich with her fiancé and their 19-month-old daughter.

On Sunday 21 November 1993 Karen Hales was stabbed to death and an attempt had been made to set her body alight in the presence of her young daughter Emily.

Geraldine Hales said: "The only good thing was we saved Emily's life, otherwise she would've been burnt to death or overcome by smoke."

The house in Lavenham Road in Ipswich where Karen Hale's body was found. Credit: ITV News Anglia

Detective Superintendent Andy Smith, from Suffolk Police, said: "As a police officer with 25 years' service there are few words to describe just how horrendous this crime is.

"Karen was 21 years of age with her whole life ahead of her.

"I'm desperate to use the 25 year anniversary to make a renewed appeal for information. There are people out there who may hold the key to unlocking this dreadful crime."

On the day she was murdered there was at least two inches of snow on the ground and although it was not exceptionally cold, there were few people on the streets.

Darkness fell that day around 4pm and Karen and her daughter were alone in the house, her partner having left for work earlier.

Shortly before 4.40pm Karen's parents called at the house and entered through the unlocked front door.

They were confronted with smoke and flames within the house and found that Karen had been stabbed and an attempt made to set her alight.

Despite extensive media attention and a huge investigation, Karen's killer has not been found.

Detective Superintendent Andy Smith, Geraldine Hales and Karen's sister Angie Kates. Credit: ITV News Anglia