Belfast Telegraph

Derrylin fire: Man faces court on four murder charges

The scene in Derrylin last week after fatal fire
The scene in Derrylin last week after fatal fire
Landlord of the property Tommy Fee
Allan Preston

By Allan Preston

A 27-year-old man is due in court this morning charged with four counts of murder following a house fire in Co Fermanagh last week.

The accused also faces one count of arson with intent to endanger life.

He will appear at Enniskillen Magistrates Court.

The four victims, including a baby girl, died at a rented property in the border village of Derrylin last week.

They are understood to have all been from the same family.

Landlord Tommy Fee has named them as Crystal Gossett (44), her children Diane (19) and Edward (16), as well as Diane's young daughter, who is thought to have been aged under two.

He said another man, who he named as Sam Quinn, had also been living at the property. Neighbours have said the family were not well-known in the area.

It's understood they originally came from Doncaster, but had moved to Tralee in Co Kerry before relocating to Derrylin around 18 months ago.

A 27-year-old man, who was detained at the scene of the fire, was taken to hospital before being transferred into police custody.

Over the weekend detectives were granted extra time for questioning the suspect.

The PSNI has yet to formally identify the victims.

Investigations were hampered last week by the appalling weather conditions.

There was a heavy police presence on Friday night as the vehicles carrying the bodies of the family drove slowly along snow-covered Molly Road, bound for Belfast for post-mortems.

Father Gerard Alwill, parish priest of Knockninny, said last week that prayers would be said for the family during church services yesterday. Local residents, he added, also hoped to hold a vigil for the deceased, but would wait for the blessing of the wider family first.

Mr Fee spoke about how he and other neighbours tried in vain to save the family from the burning property. "I drive past the scene every day and it makes me think of the tragedy," he said.

"I think it's better to try and carry on as normal, and work keeps my mind off it.

"My whole family is very traumatised to think of an innocent child being burned.

"If I kept thinking about it, I would drive myself crazy."

Police have appealed for anyone who knew the residents of 57 Molly Road, or who was in the area between midnight last Monday and 7.20am on Tuesday, to contact detectives in Enniskillen.

Belfast Telegraph


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