Husband denies being involved in care home death

A pensioner has protested his innocence after being arrested on suspicion of murdering his 75-year-old wife, who was found dead at a care home.

Roger Marshall, 85, was arrested within hours of his wife Dorothy’s death, after staff at the home in Hornsea raised concerns.

Mrs Marshall, who suffered from dementia as well as diabetes and heart disease, was found dead at 8.30pm last Tuesday at Aarondale House on Eastgate.

Mr Marshall, who spent the night in a police cell after his arrest, has now been released on bail as police await the result of toxicology tests.

A post-mortem examination has so far proved inconclusive.

Speaking from his home in Saint Nicholas Drive, in the town, Mr Marshall denied being involved in the death of his wife and said he had been completely devoted to her. Describing her as a friendly, easy-going woman, he said they regularly went to church together before she became ill.

The pensioner said: “I am completely innocent of the allegations against me.

“I loved Dorothy and I was completely devoted to her.

“I am devastated by her death and by the accusation it was anything to do with me.”

Officers went to the home after staff raised concerns over the circumstances of the death.

Mr Marshall was arrested shortly afterwards and was kept in custody overnight and questioned the following day.

He was released on bail later that day, pending further inquiries.

Detective Superintendent Dena Fleming, of Humberside Police, said Mrs Marshall did not have any injuries and a post-mortem examination proved inconclusive.

She confirmed that Mr Marshall had visited the home the day before his wife’s death.

Mrs Fleming said: “Mr Marshall was arrested on suspicion of murder very shortly after Mrs Marshall’s body was found.

“This was an elderly lady who suffered from lots of natural illnesses.

“The lady did have a lot of natural diseases. The only thing that will confirm or otherwise that there is anything suspicious around the death is a toxicology report and we won’t get that till the end of next week.”

Mr Marshall, who married his wife in April 2004, said: “I don’t know how she died.

“I’ve had the police question me and take away photographs of us together.

“But I went to visit Dorothy every single day since December 2005 so that should show how I felt about her.

“Dorothy was a lovely, uncomplicated person.”

It is thought Mrs Marshall was married previously and leaves behind a daughter and a son.

A friend of Mrs Marshall, who asked not to be named, said she was well-known and liked in the town.

She said: “She used to work in a newsagents, so lots of people knew her.

“She was friendly and just a nice, down-to-earth ordinary person. She would often pop in for a cuppa and she was pleasant company.”

Speaking about when she noticed signs of dementia, she said: “She started to repeat the odd thing.

“I hardly noticed myself at first but then she got worse.

“It’s very sad to see that happen to someone.”

Aarondale is a private home that specialises in caring for people with dementia.

Lesley Ellis, manager at Aarondale House, said: “She was a lovely lady.

“She will be greatly missed by all the staff here.”

Mrs Marshall’s daughter, Yvonne Barley, who lives in Sutton, said she did not want to comment while the police investigations were continuing.

East Riding Council’s Social Services is liaising with the police over their investigation of the death.