Briton arrested in California over stabbing deaths of wife and mother-in-law


A British man has been arrested on suspicion of killing his wife and mother-in-law at their California home before hiding in a homeless camp.

Dave McCann, 49, is accused of slashing the throats of his wife, Tierney Cooper McCann, 36, and her mother, Judith Cooper, 68, and also threatening to kill his sister-in-law after smashing his way into the family home on Saturday.

Dave Thomas McCann (Clovis Police Department/AP/PA)
(Clovis Police Department/AP/PA)

Police said he fled the scene of the murders and went on the run, dumping his getaway car, riding a bicycle and hitch-hiking for 150 miles.

In a further attempt to evade capture, McCann allegedly went "off the grid" by not using cash machines or a mobile phone, according to police.

His arrest came after a four-day manhunt when a homeless man tipped off police that he was laying low at a coastal camp.

Cooper McCann's sister, Cortney Rider, told local media the McCanns' marriage had broken down and his business was struggling.

The day before the killings McCann had visited the family home to collect some belongings without incident.

Rider said she awoke the following morning to find McCann breaking down the door of the house in Clovis, near Fresno, and before she could call the police he had attacked her sister, slitting her throat.

She said: "He looked at me and said, 'you're next', and I immediately ran out of the front door and ran to the next door neighbours.

"My mum was hiding in the master bedroom having it locked and he busted down the door after not being able to catch me. He went back to the house and he slit my mum's throat in the back bedroom."

Dave Thomas McCann (Clovis Police Department/AP/PA)
Dave Thomas McCann (Clovis Police Department/AP/PA)

Rider said that despite being fatally wounded, her sister went to their mother's aid after McCann left.

"She was able to walk back to the bedroom and lay with my mum and they both died together," she said.

McCann, who was said to have been living in the US on a green card, was found asleep four days later in a homeless camp in Seaside, a town around 150 miles away.