'I would not cover for Millie's killer,' mother told PSNI
The mother of a Fermanagh toddler who was sexually assaulted and murdered has described the little girl as her whole life, a court has heard.
Rachael Martin, who is accused of allowing the death of 15-month-old Millie (below), told detectives she would never cover for the attacker — saying “nothing is more important than your child’s life”.
The 27-year-old, from Main Street, Kesh, is accused of wilfully neglecting and allowing the death, while her 33-year-old former partner Barry McCarney of Woodview Crescent, Trillick, denies murdering and abusing her.
The toddler died on December 11, 2009, after suffering a serious head injury. She was later discovered to have suffered a catalogue of other injuries.
Dungannon Crown Court yesterday heard transcripts of police interviews held with Martin after the murder. The court was told she was initially interviewed as a witness rather than a suspect.
According to the transcripts, Martin admitted to detectives that she had loved McCarney and agreed with them that there was “nothing more important than your child's life”.
When asked if there was “anyone you would cover for”, Martin replied: “Definitely not,” particularly where Millie was concerned.
She told detectives that the little girl “was my life and still is”.
She said she “would not think twice” about questioning McCarney or anyone else she suspected of harming the child.
Earlier the court heard that Martin told police that when she put Millie to bed for the last time, she was “alright”.
The jury previously heard that shortly afterwards, Martin went out to buy chocolate for McCarney, and by the time she returned home, Millie was already being rushed to hospital.
She returned to find their home at Glebe Park, Enniskillen, empty. Martin said she then noticed a missed call on her mobile before it rang again. It was from McCarney telling her to go to hospital.
Later she described that when given the news that Millie may have been “tampered with”, she was “physically sick”. Martin said she “couldn't believe it”.
The case continues.