Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Murder comment row woman leaves job

A wedding picture on the front of the Order of Service at Michaela McAreavey's funeral

A photographer who posted offensive messages on social networking site Facebook following the murder of Michaela McAreavey in Mauritius has left her newspaper job.

Susanne Morrison, 19, - who took pictures part-time for the County Down Outlook weekly paper - used her Facebook page to question the outpouring of grief following the death of the only daughter of Tyrone Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) boss, Mickey Harte.

Mrs McAreavey was strangled to death during her honeymoon at the luxury Legends Hotel on the sunshine island a fortnight ago.

"Susanne Morrison is sick hearing about Makeala [sic] Hartes death! Thousands of people die terrible deaths everyday through diseases and whatever so what makes her so special", she wrote.

Another post read: "What is it they say about what goes around comes around or Karma or what evr u wana call it."

The County Down Outlook, which is being distributed in the South Down area where Michaela's widower John McAreavey plays Gaelic football and where the newlyweds had bought a new home, told UTV "the part-time probationary member of staff" is no longer employed by the company.

Outlook editor Joanne Ross said: "The County Down Outlook continues to categorically disassociate itself with the comments made and can confirm that the individual whose personal Facebook page contained the comments, is no longer employed by the County Down Outlook or any associated company. We remain totally appalled by the comments made on Facebook. We reiterate that the views and opinions expressed are those of the individual author and are not shared or endorsed by the Company or other members of staff."

The County Down Outlook, which has offices in Rathfriland and Kilkeel, is published by Alpha Newspapers - an independent publishing company owned and chaired by former Ulster Unionist deputy leader Lord Kilclooney.

Ms Morrison was not able to be contacted for comment.

Last week around 3,000 people attended Michaela's funeral to pay their respects to the Harte and McAreavey families. The 27-year-old Irish language teacher was buried in her wedding dress at St Malachy's church outside Ballygawley.

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