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Probe into double death

Young mother 'murdered by her fiance

By Jonathan McCambridge


THE family of a young mother who police believe was murdered by her paramilitary linked fiance were today said to be "devastated".

The bodies of Thomas Daly, a member of the UDA, and Leanne McKee were found at their home in the New Mossley estate on Saturday night.

Police are working on the theory that Mr Daly stabbed his girlfriend during a heated row, before hanging himself.

The couple had been due to marry in May and had a four-year-old daughter, Kylie.

Police were called to the house in Ballyvessey Court after reports that an argument had been heard at the couple's flat.

Police have confirmed they were conducting a murder investigation, but were not looking for anyone else in connection with the deaths.

Ulster Political Research member Tommy Kirkham said Daly had been a UDA member but not a senior one.

"Reports that he was a top commander are rubbish. Tommy and Leanne were a lovely couple who were very, very close and were due to be married soon.

"Only recently I had signed their passports as part of their wedding plans. Tommy was a hard grafter who worked every day to provide for his family."

Mr Kirkham added: "I have spoken with Leanne's family and they are absolutely devastated by this - they are still in shock.

"Our thoughts are with them and with Kylie."

Ms McKee's uncle Jimmy Beckett said the family was stunned at what had happened.

"The family is totally shell-shocked - they seemed like a happy enough couple.

"They were due to be married in the summer and they were in love with each other."

Mr Beckett added: "Police have told us that Leanne was found stabbed and that he was hanging."

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