THE husband of a headteacher found dead on school grounds reported her to police for allegedly striking him years before her death, it is claimed.
George Pattison, who cops suspect killed his wife Emma, seven-year-old daughter Lettie and then himself in a double murder-suicide last weekend, made the allegations in 2016.
6Emma, George and Lettie Pattison were found dead on the grounds of Epsom College, SurreyCredit: PA6George allegedly reported his wife to the police for striking him in 2016Credit: TwitterHe is said to have contacted Surrey Police to say his partner had hit him and she was spoken to by officers.
But he later withdrew the claim as he decided it was trivial, The Times reports.
George, 39, Emma, 45, and little Lettie were found dead on the grounds of Epsom College, Surrey, where Emma was headmistress, in the early hours of February 5.
Detectives believe the dad shot his partner and daughter being turning the gun on himself.
The chartered accountant held a shotgun licence, which had recently been updated, and a weapon registered in his name.
Cops have not disclosed the cause of deaths but a firearm belonging to George was discovered at the family home with their bodies.
The case is being treated as a double murder-suicide.
George had been in contact with Surrey Police just days before the killings on February 2 to change the address on his gun licence after the family moved to the school site from Caterham.
The force said this was a “routine” formality, but due to how recently the update was made, the incident has been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
George is thought to have killed his family late on Saturday night.
Earlier that evening, his wife made a distress call to a relative with concerns about her partner, the BBC reports.
By the time they arrived at the house, which is surrounded by other properties occupied by college staff and is close to the prestigious school’s rifle range, all three were dead.
A school worker living nearby is believed to have raised the alarm after hearing suspected gunshots.
Detective Chief Inspector Kimball Edey, senior investigating officer on the case, said: “This is an incredibly traumatic incident and we are working around the clock to investigate and understand the exact circumstances which led to this point.”
Emma was only appointed headmistress at the £42,000-a-year boarding school five months ago.
She lived on-site with her daughter, Labrador puppy Bella and husband George, who ran a management consultancy firm called Tanglewood 2016, according to Companies House.
Despite moving to Epsom from their £1.5million property in Caterham last year, the Pattisons reportedly only recently finished transporting the last of their belongings.
Removal vans were spotted outside the four-bedroom detached home, where they had lived since 2014, in the last few weeks.
Emma was a wonderful teacher, but most of all she was a delightful person.Dr Alastair Wells
The loss of the “much-loved” head and her “lovely” family has shaken the community.
One former neighbour said: “It is just shocking and unimaginable.”
Another described them as having “an obvious bond”, while former colleagues and parents said Emma couldn’t have been more committed to her job.
Dr Alastair Wells, chairman of the board of governors at Epsom College, said she was a “wonderful teacher” and “delightful person” who “enriched the lives of many pupils throughout the distinguished career”.
Cheryl Giovannoni, chief executive of the Girls’ Day School Trust (GDST) which runs Croydon High School where Emma used to work, said: “Emma was a much loved and respected member of the GDST community, as well as a talented Head and teacher, and a dear friend to many of us.
“She touched the lives of all of us with her energy, wisdom and kindness and the school will always bear the legacy of her inspiring leadership.”
And Julie Keller, head at Nottingham Girls’ High School, said her life was “richer for having Emma as a friend and colleague”.
“The world is certainly poorer for her loss,” she added.
‘SO MUCH TO BE EXCITED ABOUT’
Before Christmas, Emma seemed enthusiastic about her future at the elite school, which counts presenter Jeremy Vine and ex-MI6 spy chief Sir John Scarlett as ex-pupils.
She excitedly told sixth form students that she couldn’t wait to experience her first Founder’s Day, pancake race and prize-giving ceremony.
Emma said: “I am absolutely loving my time here so far.
“It has been very, very busy, but absolutely wonderful.
“There is so much to look ahead to and be excited about.”
But she also revealed that the new role had brought “really big changes” for her family.
“We’ve obviously moved house, we’ve got a dog, I’ve got a new job, my husband’s got a new job, which wasn’t meant to happen but did, and my daughter has started at a new school,” Emma said.
The college is supporting students with chapel services and counselling, a spokesperson said.
Police remain on the scene while the area is forensically examined.
Changes were made to gun licensing systems in the wake of shooting tragedies in Plymouth and West Sussex.
New digital markers were put in place to flag up to GPs relevant changes in patients with firearms licences who may be medically unfit to hold them.
In August 2021, Jake Davison killed his mother Maxine Davison, 51, three-year-old Sophie Martyn, her father, Lee, 43, Stephen Washington, 59, and Kate Shepherd, 66, in Keyham, Plymouth, just weeks after having his pump-action shotgun and certificate returned by police.
In March 2020, Robert Needham, 42, killed his partner Kelly Fitzgibbons, 40, and two daughters Ava and Lexi Needham, four and two, before turning the gun on himself at their home in Woodmancote.
6Police are treating the tragedy as a double murder-suicideCredit: LNP6Police outside Epsom College in SurreyCredit: PA6Emma was appointed headteacher at Epsom College in September 2022Credit: PA6A flag flies at half mast at at the prestigious £42,000-a-year schoolCredit: Getty
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk