Man charged with murder after teacher dies at Theobalds Park hotel
A law student has appeared in court charged with murder after a young teacher was found dead at a Hertfordshire hotel on Christmas Eve.
Katie Locke, 23, died at the 140-bedroom Theobalds Park hotel, a Grade II-listed Georgian manor house, owned and operated by De Vere Venues, in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire. She taught history and politics at Cardinal Pole, a Roman Catholic secondary school in Hackney, east London.
Carl Langdell, 26, of Waltham Cross, was charged on Christmas Day with her murder. He was remanded in custody at Luton Crown Court on Tuesday.
After studying business management and journalism, Langdell is currently a law student and the founder of Langdell Legal Associates.
Locke's parents, John and Jennifer, said in a statement released by police: "As a family we are distraught, in shock and totally devastated. There was not a bad bone in Katie's body.
"Katie worked hard and loved her job as a teacher. In what little spare time she had she enjoyed sports. We now feel like our future has been stolen from us."
The murder follows another death at the hotel a year ago when Robert Williams, 27, a building surveyor and guest, was found suffering from acute hypothermia after he was believed to have fallen off the roof after sleep walking. He died on Christmas Day.
Theobalds Park is part of the 23-strong De Vere Venues portfolio acquired by Starwood Capital Group from the De Vere Group in March 2014 for £231m.