A Brit screamed: “Oh my god – he’s dead?” when police broke her in hospital the news that her former rugby league star partner had died in her hotel room.
The 44-year-old, whose identity is known to MailOnline, was found half-naked and covered in blood after shouting for help from guests and staff.
Paramedics raced to the £350-a-night luxury Hotel Continentale in Florence, Italyearly Saturday morning and discovered Ricky Bibey, 40, lying dead on the ground.
The woman was taken to the city’s Careggi Hospital in serious condition, where she has since undergone multiple surgeries for severe blood loss.
Today, a prosecutor’s source told MailOnline exclusively: “The woman is in a serious condition but thankfully she is stable, although her condition means we have not been able to take a full statement from her.
“When we told her her partner had died, she screamed, ‘Oh my God – he’s dead?’ She said she had no idea and then needed reassurance. She was in terrible condition and had multiple surgeries.
“No formal statement was taken from her and it is unlikely that she will be questioned for several days until we get the green light from doctors.”
The circumstances of Mr Bibey’s death are still unclear and a post-mortem was due later this week after a delay due to “family matters” and his brother is believed to be in Florence.
Emergency medical services vehicles gathered outside the hotel today following the tragic death
Investigators consult her notes as they investigate the death and injury at the elegant hotel
Police said they are still trying to determine the exact cause of the woman’s death and injury
MailOnline can also exclusively reveal that a case of “manslaughter against unknown persons” has also been opened by the prosecutor Ester Nocera from Florence – although investigators are convinced that no third party is involved.
The prosecution source said: “We need to open an official file because at the moment we still have an unexplained death in circumstances that are far from clear.
“More will be explained when we speak properly to the woman and when the autopsy results are known.
“What we do know is that the couple came back from a night out in the early hours of the morning and then went to his first floor room and we know they started having consensual sex.
“But what we need to determine is if something happened later that made that sex non-consensual, and only the woman can tell us that.”
A police source told MailOnline: “The people involved are both British and at the moment we are working on two theories about an erotic game gone wrong.” Pictured: Continentale suite
Marks were found on Mr Bibey’s neck and wrists and prosecutors want to determine if it was part of the consensual sex or if he suffered it while trying to defend himself, while the woman also has injuries to her body.
The source added: “Both the man and woman have injuries on their bodies, it’s possible this arose from consensual sex and later became defensive injuries as the sex became non-consensual.
“Right now we can’t rule out any theory and so we really need to speak to the woman to get a clearer picture of what happened.
“It could have been an erotic game gone wrong that led to his death from a medical incident, we just don’t know yet.”
Police have recovered items from the couple’s rooms and medical experts are also examining photos of the Manchester woman’s injuries.
The couple landed at Pisa airport last Friday and then took a train to Florence, checking into their hotel before heading out for the night.
The £350 a night Hotel Continentale (terrace pictured) was the scene of the accident
MailOnline is also able to reveal that the woman – a mother of three – has tested positive for drugs, with traces of cocaine in her body, according to media reports.
Official police sources contacted by MailOnline and asked about the developments said: “We can’t go into the specific details but let’s just say they have good whistleblowers.”
The newspapers La Nazione and La Repubblica reported how doctors who treated her said drug tests before an operation came back positive.
Today, the first floor hotel room where the incident took place has been cordoned off with corridor doors leading to it and a hand sanitizer has been placed in front of it.
Police have contacted Interpol in Rome to demand background checks on the couple from colleagues in Manchester.
Employees called the police after the woman asked a maid for help.
The hotel is a few minutes’ walk from the heart of the city, popular with British tourists
Paramedics rushed to the hotel, a stone’s throw from the famous Ponte Vecchio bridge in the Renaissance city of Florence, and the woman was taken to the city’s Careggi Hospital, where she is said to be in serious but stable condition.
The couple, who are believed to be from Manchester, had only arrived at the hotel on Friday night and the alarm was sounded early Saturday morning.
There were also unconfirmed reports in the Italian media that the late man was an “amateur league” rugby player.
A police source told MailOnline: “The people involved are both British and at the moment we are working on two theories, an erotic game gone wrong or some sort of domestic dispute, but the general direction is that of an erotic game.
“The man was found with a number of cuts, bruises and other injuries to his body, as was the woman, although she was more seriously injured and the man appeared to be having some sort of seizure.
“There is blood in the room and forensic teams are working in there right now while the woman was taken to the hospital for treatment.
The man is said to have had a seizure during the “erotic game” in the swanky hotel room
The man died shortly before Florence’s landmark, the Ponte Vecchio on the Arno River
“Her current condition is serious, but she is stable and her injuries are not life-threatening. We hope to interview her sometime in the next few hours.”
Sources said the couple are from Manchester and arrived at the hotel late Friday night.
The couple went out shortly after arriving on Friday and returned just before 2am on Saturday with witnesses who said they were in “high spirits”.
Police sources said the woman had a child through a previous relationship but was not married to the man who died.
The picturesque Italian city is known for its beautiful bridges and Renaissance architecture
A source said: “The woman had sounded the alarm after a maid knocked on the door.”
The hotel is just a few minutes’ walk from the heart of the city, popular with British holidaymakers. Prince Charles and former Prime Minister Tony Blair are regular visitors.
Guidebooks describe the £350-a-night hotel as “frisky chic” and it has a rooftop bar and spa and is popular with “honeymooners and those looking for a romantic weekend away”.
A source said: “The woman had raised the alarm after a maid knocked on the door, but some of the guests had already called reception to report screams and banging coming from the room.”
Television news footage showed several police cars and an ambulance parked outside the hotel while forensic teams entered and exited the foyer while tourists from the nearby Ponte Vecchio bridge looked on.
Local judge Ester Nocera has launched an inquiry into the tragedy and was also seen entering the hotel and speaking to forensic teams.