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Adelaide murder: Top university student killed by her father

EXCLUSIVE: ‘Beautiful’ medical student, 20 – who scored 99.35 in her year 12 exams – is found stabbed to death beside her seriously injured father inside a luxury Mercedes just outside the family home

  • A young woman found dead outside her family’s Adelaide home was top student
  • Sabrina Lekaj, 20, was found dead inside her family’s Mercedes on Sunday night
  • The glamorous university student graduated high school with a score of 99.35
  • Police are treating her death as suspicious and will interview her dad Petrit Lekaj
  • Mr Lekaj was in car with his daughter at the time and was suffering stab wounds 

A young woman found dead in the front seat of a Mercedes Benz with her seriously injured father beside her was a high achieving student and talented pianist.

Sabrina Lekaj, 20, died in the car outside her family home in Kidman Park, Adelaide, on Sunday night less than an hour after her mother had called police to say she was worried for her safety.

When officers arrived at the scene they found Ms Lekaj dead inside the car, and her father Petrit Lekaj, in a serious condition beside her with stab wounds to his stomach.

He was rushed to hospital for treatment, where he remains in a stable condition.

South Australia Police said they are treating Ms Lekaj’s death as suspicious and would interview Mr Lekaj when his condition improves. No-one else is wanted for questioning over the attack. 

As news spread of Ms Lekaj’s death, tributes flowed with friends remembering her as a good friend and top student who had graduated high school with a score of 99.35.

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Sabrina Lekaj (right), 20, died near her family home in Kidman Park, Adelaide, on Sunday night. Police are set to interview her father Petrit Lekaj (left). No one else is wanted for questioning

Sabrina Lekaj (right), 20, died near her family home in Kidman Park, Adelaide, on Sunday night. Police are set to interview her father Petrit Lekaj (left). No one else is wanted for questioning

Ms Lekaj attended Nazareth Catholic College in Adelaide, graduating in 2016 with a leading score 99.35

Ms Lekaj attended Nazareth Catholic College in Adelaide, graduating in 2016 with a leading score 99.35

‘I can’t believe I’m writing this. My beautiful Sabrina. Incredibly talented pianist, high achiever and queen of dark humour. I love you. Forever in our hearts,’ her friend Jana Fandi posted on Instagram.

‘Rest in Peace Sab. I will never forget our psych(ology) and bio(ology) classes. You’ll be missed,’ school mate Emma Rowe wrote. 

Ms Lekaj attended Nazareth Catholic College in Adelaide, graduating in 2016 with a leading score in biology and religious studies. 

She was then accepted into the University of South Australia where she studied both classical piano performance and medical imaging.

Ms Lekaj’s mother Romina and younger brother were seen arriving back at the family home with sick bags in hand on Monday.

Police had begun searching for the pair just before 10.30pm on Sunday, after family raised the alarm and expressed ‘concern for the occupants’. 

Ms Lekaj (centre) on her 18th birthday with her father Petrit (left) and mother Romina (right)

Ms Lekaj (centre) on her 18th birthday with her father Petrit (left) and mother Romina (right)

As news spread of Ms Lekaj's death tributes flowed (pictured), with friends remembering her as a good friend and top student

As news spread of Ms Lekaj’s death tributes flowed (pictured), with friends remembering her as a good friend and top student

The woman's body was found inside the white Mercedes sedan parked on Kidman Avenue, at Kidman Park, in Adelaide's western suburbs, about 11.30pm on Sunday

The woman’s body was found inside the white Mercedes sedan parked on Kidman Avenue, at Kidman Park, in Adelaide’s western suburbs, about 11.30pm on Sunday

The woman's death is being treated as suspicious and Western District CIB detectives and crime scene examiners attended the scene on Monday

The woman’s death is being treated as suspicious and Western District CIB detectives and crime scene examiners attended the scene on Monday

They scoured the Kidman Park, Fulham Gardens and Findon area before finding the car.

Detective Chief Inspector Tony Ransom confirmed the duo are father and daughter, while speaking to the media on Monday.

Emergency crews found her father next to the car, conscious but suffering serious injuries to the abdomen.

‘The incident is not considered random, with both persons known to each other,’ he said. 

After graduating from Nazareth Catholic College, Ms Lekaj was accepted into the University of South Australia where she was studying classical piano performance and medical imaging

After graduating from Nazareth Catholic College, Ms Lekaj was accepted into the University of South Australia where she was studying classical piano performance and medical imaging

Police had to smash the windows of the Mercedes to get to Ms Lekaj (left, with her mother) and her father. She was conscious when emergency crews arrived but died a short time later

Police had to smash the windows of the Mercedes to get to Ms Lekaj (left, with her mother) and her father. She was conscious when emergency crews arrived but died a short time later 

‘Investigation into the matter is continuing and there is a lot of background information into the matter police are trying to establish.

‘Please appreciate we haven’t had a chance to speak to the father at this stage due to his condition.’   

Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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