Belfast Telegraph

When a relationship ends in murder... three cases that made the headlines

BY CLAIRE McNEILLY

Stephen Cahoon (39) from Co Londonderry murdered a woman pregnant with his child. Jean Quigley (30) was killed at her home on July 26, 2008. The body of the mother-of-four was discovered strangled and bruised. Cahoon told a court that he strangled her to death after she had told him the child she was carrying was not his and that she was going to have an abortion. "That's when I saw red and I grabbed her by the throat," he said. Cahoon said he held for about 30 seconds and she "turned purple". In a statement, the PSNI welcomed the conviction of Cahoon, saying: "He is a dangerous sexual predator with a history of violence against women."

Fred McClenaghan murdered his former partner at a launderette in Portstewart. Marion Millican, a mother-of-four originally from Coleraine, was shot dead at her workplace on March 11, 2011. The 51-year-old suffered a shotgun wound to her chest and died at the scene. Fred McClenaghan (49), from Broad Street in Magherafelt, had claimed that he accidentally shot her while attempting to kill himself. He had been in a relationship with Mrs Millican but it had ended a few months before she was killed. Mr Millican told the court that Marion had told him that Mr McClenaghan had tried to strangle her after a night out and in a separate incident, had knocked her out.

Phelim McNally (27) from Toomebridge was jailed for life for the murder of his ex-partner's sister and attempting to murder the mother of his two children in a double shooting incident in Bellaghy last year. He killed 18-year-old Lauren O'Neill and attempted to murder her 22-year-old sister Brenda during the shootings which took place in Brenda's south Derry home in William Court, Bellaghy on May 19, 2012. McNally's two young children, then aged three years, and 10 months, were present in the house before he opened fire. Brenda, who had to undergo emergency surgery, spent over three weeks in hospital and missed Lauren's funeral.

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