A MUM who was stabbed to death led a troubled life and had worked as a prostitute, a court heard.

Kelly Davies, a 31-year-old mother-of-three, was found collapsed at her home in Queen Street, Farnworth, by family friend Vincent Walmsley at about 1pm on Monday, June 4, last year.

Ms Davies had been stabbed 22 times, and had wounds in her throat, face and hands.

Her ex-partner, Joseph Davies, known as Joey, aged 36, denies murdering her.

Toni Morton, Ms Davies’ sister, in a statement which was read by prosecutor Barrie Derby at Manchester Crown Court yesterday, said her sister had got into drugs at the age of 12 or 13, but she did not believe she had a problem.

She started using heroin when she was pregnant with her eldest child.

Mr Derby said: “She would score wherever she could. She would prostitute herself in Shiffnall Street.

“She said she had been raped and thrown into a van and then beaten up by one of her dealers.”

Ms Davies once stole her eldest daughter’s presents one Christmas Eve and was a heavy drinker, the court was told.

Mrs Morton cared for two of her sister’s children.

The jury heard Ms Davies failed to collect her daughter to go to a party and later told her sister that she had suffered an epileptic fit. Two days later she was found dead.

Mrs Morton’s statement said: “Kelly said Joseph Davies wouldn’t go around to hers and kick off and cause trouble.”

She added: “I would never have let my niece go if I thought she was in danger.”

Mr Walmsley found Ms Davies’ five-year-old daughter in the house when he discovered her body.

Mrs Morton said Ms Davies’ relationship with the defendant, which started when she was 14, was “volatile” and had been “on and off”.

The sisters were said to be estranged because of Ms Davies’ “chaotic lifestyle”.

Keith Davies, Davies’ brother, said Ms Davies had been trying to turn her life around and had not worked as a prostitute for years.

He said his brother liked to travel, having previously been to Holland and Magaluf, and had asked his father to go to Thailand with him when he was released from prison.

Davies is alleged to have killed Ms Davies just days after coming out of prison. It is alleged that he then fled to Holland, where he was later arrested after being hit by a train.

Case continues.