A WOMAN has appeared in court accused of killing her husband.

Helena Karine Atay, 42, from Birtley, near Chester-le-Street, was charged with murder following the death of 45-year-old shopkeeper Atakan Atay.

Police say Mr Atay’s injuries were consistent with stab wounds.

He died soon after emergency services were called to a property in Jasmine Terrace, Birtley, at about 11pm on Thursday.

Ms Atay, of Jasmine Terrace, appeared at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court on Saturday.

She has been remanded in custody and will appear at Newcastle Crown Court on Tuesday.

Detective Inspector Sharon Chatterton, senior investigating officer, said: “A murder investigation is always tragic for those involved and our thoughts go out to family at this very difficult time.”

The couple are understood to be the parents of Sophie Atay, who died of neuroblastoma in 2010, when she was two-years-old.