General Crime

* Diane Sydenham charged with the fatal stabbing of James Edward Durkin Jr

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An Albany woman was arraigned on murder charges in Richmond Thursday for allegedly stabbing her elderly companion in his Kensington home on Monday, a Contra Costa County prosecutor said today. Diane Wyn Sydenham, 56, did not enter a plea at Thursday’s hearing.

She is charged with the fatal stabbing of 81-year-old James Edward Durkin Jr., who had a knife still sticking out of him when he was found just before noon on Monday, according to police. Durkin Jr., a retired psychology professor, was discovered after police were sent to his home on a welfare check.

Investigators later identified Sydenham as a suspect and arrested her on suspicion of murder at her home in the 700 block of Kains Avenue in Albany on Tuesday. Sydenham was taken to the Martinez Detention Facility where she is being held on $1 million bail. She is set to return to court on Aug. 30.

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