‘We have lost our best friend as well as a relative’

Dawn Kibble and her husband George were closer to Julie Davison than anybody.

When Ms Davison’s marriage broke down and she moved out of Preston and back to Whitby, her sister and husband offered shelter until setting her up in a flat on Church Square in April 2011.

Every night, Ms Davison, the mother of a 28-year-old son who lives in Preston, would still come round to her sister’s house on nearby St Andrews Road for a home-cooked meal. She would also regularly stay on the weekends.

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In an interview with the Yorkshire Post, the couple say it is this which had made her brutal murder so hard to take.

“We have lost our best friend as well as a relative,” Mrs Kibble, 61, said. “I just cannot get my head around what has happened.

“I keep expecting her to come down the stairs. Sometimes when we go shopping I say, ‘Oh Julie will like that’.

“Now and again I still turn around to talk to her.

“We were closer to her than anybody, even when she was living away from Whitby I phoned her every day. We used to go and stay with her as well.

“Julie was just kind-hearted to a fault.”

Ms Davison had a long history of epilepsy, but despite the debilitating condition devoted much of her life to voluntary work.

She was a long-standing volunteer with St John Ambulance and two nights before her murder 
had been presented in Whitby with a certificate for her commitment.

The next night, Mrs Kibble dropped her sister back off at her flat.

“She gave me two kisses and said, ‘That is for Georgie and I love you and will speak to you tomorrow’. She was always very affectionate.”

Later that evening, Ms Davison returned from bingo at the nearby Whitby Rifle Club on Crescent Avenue at around 10pm.

She phoned her sister to say she was safe, as she would every evening and morning due to her epilepsy.

“The next morning she hadn’t rung and I phoned her four or five times,” Mrs Kibble said.

“Then I said to George, ‘Something is not right’. I thought she would have had a seizure.

“There was never any warning sign and they could come along at any point.”

At 12.40pm on Wednesday 
April 25, Dawn and George 
Kibble – a 64-year-old former Royal Mail driver – decided to go to Church Square together.

They took the key to her flat as well a hacksaw to cut through the chain on the front-door which she would put on every night.

“When we got to her flat, the chain wasn’t on the door,” Mr Kibble said.

“When I walked in, her clothes and things were all over the floor and I thought she must have had a seizure and knocked everything off because the room was wrecked.

“I thought she must have hit her head because there was blood everywhere. Then I saw Julie laid on the floor.

“He had cut her throat and stabbed or hit her 57 times. I never want to see anything like that again. I felt her pulse and she had gone. I rang 999.”

Among the items which Allen had stolen were Ms Davison’s laptop, a new black waterproof Regatta jacket, cash she had withdrawn for an upcoming shopping trip with the Kibbles to Redcar, and a St Christopher pendant given to her by her sister.

“I had it for between 35 and 40 years,” Mrs Kibble said.

“I gave it to Julie on my 60th birthday when we were going out for a meal. She was all dressed up and looked lovely but when she walked down the stairs, I said, ‘You need something else’ and gave it to her to wear.

“Later that night, she went to give it back to me, but I told her she should keep it.”

Nobody has been allowed back into the flat since the murder so Ms Davison’s family still do not know what else was taken.

“I have got no feeling for James Allen whatsoever,” Mr Kibble said.

“He doesn’t exist as far as I am concerned. He is obviously one of those people who has no empathy or conscience.”