By Luke Augustus for MailOnline
Published: 13:20 BST, 23 September 2020 | Updated: 13:20 BST, 23 September 2020
Italian football is in mourning after a professional referee and his girlfriend have been stabbed to death at their home in Lecce.
Daniele De Santis, 33, who officiated predominately in Serie C - Italy's third-highest division - was tragically killed on Monday along with his partner and model Eleonora Manta, 30.
Police have launched an investigation into the murder of the couple.
Italian ref Daniele De Santis and girlfriend Eleonora Manta have been murdered at their home
According to Italian publication La Repubblica, De Santis' body was found on the second-floor staircase of their apartment complex, with Manta's discovered inside their home.
Furthermore it is claimed that a man was seen running from the scene with a knife after neighbours were alerted by screaming.
Police are yet to have formally identified a suspect with La Repubblica adding that despite the presence of CCTV cameras in the vicinity of the incident the man in question 'acted with his face covered and was seen leaving the door with a backpack on his shoulders.'
Head of the Italian Referee Association