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Baby found with father 'suffocated'

A six-month-old baby boy thought to have been murdered by his father who then took his own life was suffocated, police have said.

Ollie McBride was found in a "very poorly condition" at a house in Preston and rushed to hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.

It is understood that police are examining the theory that Paul McBride, 39, may have acted in revenge against his ex-partner.

Post-mortem examination results released by Lancashire Police confirmed that Ollie died from suffocation and his father from hanging.

The baby's mother raised the alarm when the Hackney cab driver failed to return him home as agreed. Relatives of the couple - who had recently separated - called at the home of Mr McBride's mother in Marl Hill Crescent, Moor Nook, where they made the grim discovery.

It is known the pair had a recent history of domestic problems. Lancashire Police have launched a murder investigation but are not looking for anybody else in connection with the incident.

Detective Superintendent Neil Esseen, who is leading the investigation, said: "Whether it is a revenge attack is too early to say - that would be speculation. We will be looking at all sorts of theories. It is vitally important that we are able to tell the mother what has happened to her baby."

It is believed Mr McBride and his ex-partner - named locally as Michaela Swain - had been living together in the Ribbleton area of the city until recently.

Mr McBride's mother, Denise Betts, was on holiday in France when the discovery was made shortly after 6pm on Wednesday and is now returning home.

A neighbour was almost in tears as she said: "It's shocking, a terrible thing. I knew Paul. He was a happy, jolly type. He was always jokey and loved football. He had moved away, so we didn't see much of him any more."

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