FORMER LOCAL: Ebony Perks, was stabbed to death in her family’s Redwood St home in Newtown on Tuesday. This photo was taken in Emerald during the 2010-11 floods.
FORMER LOCAL: Ebony Perks, was stabbed to death in her family’s Redwood St home in Newtown on Tuesday. This photo was taken in Emerald during the 2010-11 floods. Contributed

Former Emerald locals murdered in Toowoomba stabbing

WHILE the Toowoomba community mourns the death of two of its residents, Emerald locals are remembering the woman "with a heart of gold" and her 12-year-old daughter.

Melanie Perks and her daughter Ebony were found dead in their Newtown home on Tuesday morning. They had been stabbed.

Melanie and her children had made Emerald their home, working at the local post office for almost two years, before leaving for Toowoomba in December 2011. A former work colleague and Central Highlands resident said Melanie was a "unique and quirky lady".

"She was always there to help anyone and was a complete sucker for a stray cat or dog," the friend, who wished to remain anonymous, said.

"She lived for her kids - Ebony was the spitting image of her mother. They were both very petite with a penchant for gothic/rockabilly rebel clothing. Mel recently reached her dream of completing a course in aged-care work and was employed in that field in Toowoomba.

"She will be sadly missed by her many previous workmates in Emerald."

Melanie's Facebook profile revealed a creative woman who designed and sold her own jewellery and had a soft-spot for rescuing animals.

"Well I now own two dogs, three cats, two kids, one lizard and can't forget the two fish. Adopted the new pup from the RSPCA cupcake day at the local pet shop...," she posted on August 19.

Police described the scene as "horrific".

Neighbours of the Redwood St family said they heard nothing, and only learnt of the double killing once police arrived at the scene about 9.30am Tuesday.

Neighbour Phyllis Sutton was shocked to learn of the killing. As she walked outside to move her bin, she noticed the flashing lights and police tape surrounding the house across the road.

"I had no idea... I didn't hear anything out of the ordinary," she said.

Initial phone calls alerting police and paramedics to the stabbing were made by the suspect himself.

A 16-year-old boy charged with the stabbing appeared in the Toowoomba Magistrate's Court on Tuesday. The matters were adjourned until May 1. The boy has been remanded in custody.



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