Belfast Telegraph

Murdered family's home demolished

The house where a convicted sex offender started an inferno which killed his partner and five children in Northern Ireland has been demolished.

Arthur McElhill murdered his family in Omagh, County Tyrone, in 2007, because his partner, Lorraine McGovern, threatened to leave.

An inquest heard a phone call to the emergency services made by Ms McGovern's daughter, Caroline, 13, in which she begged for help from her burning home.

The other children were Sean, seven, Bellina, four, Clodagh, 19 months, and James, who was nine months old.

The boarded-up property at Lammy Crescent was demolished on Wednesday.

McElhill had been having sex with a 16-year-old girl in the weeks before the fire.

Coroner at the inquest Suzanne Anderson concluded Ms McGovern was likely to be in the process of leaving him and this, coupled with his fear of facing prison because of his illicit relationship, contributed to him starting the fire.

The inquest also heard of McElhill's previous suicide attempts and his use of a Bebo social networking account in his son's name to groom teenage girls for sex.

It also heard he had two previous convictions for rape.

After negotiations between the families, residents and the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, the Executive agreed to buy the house and demolish it.

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