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Chch woman's family 'living in hell'

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 27/05/2016 By Cleo Fraser

Renee Duckmanton © Facebook/Renee Duckmanton Renee Duckmanton The family of a young Christchurch woman whose burnt body was found near a Canterbury river say they're broken and living in hell.

Renee Duckmanton, 22, was last seen in the city's red light district earlier this month and police believe her death may be linked to her sex work.

A 31-year-old local man was charged with her murder late Thursday and appeared in Christchurch District Court the following morning.

Ms Duckmanton's aunt Sue McGrath and father Brent McGrath were escorted from court after yelling abuse at the accused when he entered the dock.

"Everyone is just broken," Ms McGrath said outside court alongside Ms Duckmanton's young sister Madison.

"I just hope the working ladies out there protect themselves a bit more."

Madison said she was hopeful the family would pull through and "get this out of our heads".

Members of the public were cleared from the court after the outburst from family members.

Judge Gary MacAskill granted the accused interim name suppression.

The man did not enter a plea and was remanded in custody until June 10 when he will appear in the High Court.

Ms Duckmanton's burnt body was found on the side of the road near Rakaia River, about 100km west of Christchurch, on May 15 - the same day she was allegedly killed.

Detectives were continuing to search several cars and a number of Christchurch properties on Friday.

Police have acknowledged the "continued victimisation" of those working in the city's red light district and were working with other agencies looking at ways to ensure they were protected.

Ms Duckmanton's family have described her as "a bright, bubbly, goofy young woman, who was very kind and trusting".

"Renee was deeply loved by her family and many friends and she will be greatly missed," they said in a statement.

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