Birmingham & Black Country

Birmingham murders: Couple's children 'heartbroken'

Carole and Avtar Singh-Kolar
Image caption The couple had four children and eight grandchildren

The family of a couple found murdered in their Birmingham home said their hearts had been broken forever.

Avtar Singh-Kolar, 62, and his wife Carole, 58, were found by their police officer son at their house in Friary Road, Handsworth Wood on Wednesday.

Speaking at a news conference, daughter Michelle Kirwan, 39, described her parents as "the sweetest and kindest people I have ever met".

Police said post-mortem examinations would start later.

They added forensic officers were on still on the scene and they were currently viewing CCTV footage from the area.

Making an appeal for information from the local community, Ms Kirwan said: "Yesterday the light was switched out in our lives and our hearts have been broken forever.

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Media captionDet Supt Richard Baker: "It's a terrible crime, it's devastated not only a family, but a local community"

"They were the beautiful parents of myself, Jason, Taz and Marie, and the precious nanna and grandad of eight grandchilden, who adored them with all their hearts."

She said her mother had worked at the grandchildren's school at a before-school and after-school club where she was known as "Nanny Cal".

"She was like the Pied Piper with the children and they adored her."

The couple had been married for 40 years and had lived in the Handsworth Wood area for most of their lives.

One of their sons, Jason, a serving officer with the West Midlands force, went to his parents' house after being unable to contact them on the phone.

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Media captionAvtar Kolar and his sister Michelle Kirwan could not contain their tears

Det Supt Richard Baker said Jason's job as a police officer was being examined as a line of inquiry.

"But what I can say at this time is there is nothing to suggest at all that Jason's role as a police officer has anything to do with the motive in relation to this investigation."

Another son, Avtar Kolar, 32, appealed for help in catching whoever was responsible, saying: "Somebody out there knows who did this, so please I beg of you."

Mr Kolar, whose own son was born just a week ago, said the whole family was struggling to come to terms with the deaths.

He said: "The hardest thing I've ever had to do is tell my children they're never going to see their nanny and grandad again.

"We all hurt so much inside because they were so special.

"They wouldn't hurt a fly, we just can't understand how this could happen."

Floral tributes were left at the scene by members of the family, bearing the message "Why?"

Det Supt Baker said officers were also investigating if the murder was related to an increase in gold thefts in the area.

Police said they had "numerous" calls from members of the community overnight and appealed for anyone else with information to come forward.

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