Belfast Telegraph

19 people murdered in Northern Ireland, up 20% since 2017

 

20th Jan: Mark Ponisi
20th Jan: Mark Ponisi
28th Jan: Robert Flowerday
13th Feb: Raymond Johnston
27th Feb: Denise Gosset
27th Feb: Sabrina Gosset
Roman Gosset
27th Feb: Morganna Quinn
4th March: Karol Kelly
3rd April: Piotr Krowka
8th April: Brian Burke
22nd May: Stefan Zait
28th June: Robert Jones
9th July: Richard Scullion
9th July : Brian Phelan
13th Nov: Pauline Kilkenny
25th Nov: Edward Meenan
4th Dec: Jim Donegan
8th Dec: Padraig Fox
Allan Preston

By Allan Preston

Nineteen people were murdered in Northern Ireland this year, according to provisional PSNI figures.

This is four more than were killed in 2017.

The victims included a family of four who died in a house fire in the Fermanagh countryside in February.

Five of the reported murders took place within the last two-and-a-half months.

According to police, some cases classified as murder can later change to charges of manslaughter, while others thought to be suspicious may change after extensive enquiries and post-mortem examinations.

According to the provisional list, the first murder victim of 2018 was Mark Ponisi, who died on January 20 in east Belfast. The father-of-two (53) was killed in a flat off the Ravenhill Road.

On January 28 retired maths teacher Robert Flowerday (64) was found dead at his home on Mill Road in Crumlin.

The following month, on February 13, Raymond Johnston (28) was shot in front of his partner and her 11-year-old daughter while at home in Glenbawn Avenue, west Belfast. Police believe he was killed by dissident republican group Arm na Poblachta.

Four of the murders resulted from a blaze in Derrylin on February 27.

Denise Gossett (45) died along with her teenage children Roman Gossett (16), Sabrina Gossett (19) and Sabrina's infant daughter Morgana Quinn, who was just 16 months old.

On March 4 father-of-five Karol Kelly (35) was stabbed to death outside a house at Grafton Street in the Rosemount area of Londonderry.

Two people were murdered in April. Piotr Krowka (36), a Polish national, had been sleeping rough in a derelict parochial house on the Glen Road near Maghera, Co Derry. His body was found on April 3.

Brian Burke (29) was stabbed on Titania street in east Belfast on April 8 and died in hospital.

On May 24 Romanian fisherman Stefan Zait (45) died in hospital two days after being allegedly kicked about the head in Ardglass, Co Down.

On June 28 Lurgan-born father Robert Molloy Jones (30) was fatally injured at Parkmount Street in north Belfast and died in hospital.

The following month saw the death of Richard Gerard Scullion (55) in Banbridge. His body was found at a property at Millmount Court in the town on July 9.

Also in July, father-of-two Brian Phelan (33) from Bessbrook, Co Armagh, died in what police called an "unprovoked" knife attack. It took place at a rural spot along the Carrivejeeney Road on the outskirts of Newry.

Police figures show a violent end to 2018, with five reported murders since mid-October.

Ryan Macrae (32), a labourer and musician from Killyleagh, Co Down, died on October 14, nine days after an assault.

On November 13 Enniskillen was left stunned after the death of shop worker Pauline Kilkenny (59) in her home.

She was described by colleagues as a "caring and beautiful co-worker".

In Derry the body of Eddie Meenan (52) was discovered off Creggan Street in the early hours of November 25. Detectives said he had suffered "significant" head and body injuries.

On December 4 children were among those who witnessed the shooting dead of Jim Donegan (43) outside a west Belfast school.

He had been waiting on the Glen Road in his red Porsche to pick up his 13-year-old son when a lone gunman shot him in cold blood. Police said a dissident republican element is the main line of investigation.

Four days later, on December 8 in Newcastle, the body of Padraig Fox (29) was found inside a flat at Burrendale Park Road.

He was described by neighbours as a "very vulnerable young man".

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