Belfast Telegraph

Three dead in Newry horror: 'Tragic story unfolding' after shocking discovery

Double killing and suicide suspected following the deaths of a man, woman and her daughter (15)

By Mark Bain

Police have launched a murder inquiry following the discovery of three bodies in an apartment complex in Newry yesterday.

The bodies of a 38-year-old man, a woman aged 37 and her 15-year-old daughter were found in a flat at Glin Ree Court at around 11am.

The PSNI confirmed that its was not currently seeking anyone else in connection with the deaths.

"At this time the three have not been formally identified and cause of death has not been established," said Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy.

"Post-mortem examinations will take place in due course.

"We received a call from a concerned member of a family, worried that someone had not been in contact for a number of days.

"Officers responded and forced entry to the property, where they found the three bodies.

"Our investigation is ongoing at present and our thoughts at this time are very much with the loved ones of those who have died."

Initial reports suggested detectives were treating the incident as a suspected double murder and suicide, but this has not been confirmed.

It is also understood that the three victims were known to each other and that they died in a violent manner.

Police at Glin Ree Court after three bodies were found in a flat
Police at Glin Ree Court after three bodies were found in a flat
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy speaks to the media at the scene at Glin Ree Court in Newry
Police at Glin Ree Court after three bodies were found in a flat

"At this stage it would not be appropriate to elaborate further on the circumstances, as our enquiries at an extremely early stage," said Mr Murphy.

The nationalities of the victims have not yet been confirmed, but local sources indicated the two females were originally from South America and the man was from Scotland.

It's understood the woman worked for a Belfast-based engineering company.

News of the murder has shocked the normally quiet area of the city.

Surrounded by churches, Glin Ree Court has several apartment blocks off Downshire Road.

During the course of the afternoon schoolchildren walked past on their way home, surprised at the police activity in their neighbourhood as the PSNI's forensic team arrived on the scene.

Floral tributes later began arriving near the flat where the three people died.

An emotional woman visited the cordon with a child who carried a bunch of flowers, but they were not allowed into the sealed-off area.

"This is a quiet, normal sort of town and this is a part of that town," SDLP MLA Justin McNulty said.

"That makes this all the more shocking, all the more sad.

"The news has truly cast a dark cloud over our city today. My thoughts and prayers are with the family and close friends of the deceased."

SDLP councillor Michael Savage said the deaths were a tragedy.

"We believe a very tragic story is unfolding here," he said.

"This news has sent shock waves across our city and has left many people unnerved. At this stage it's too early to speculate and it's not helpful to do that.

"We will know over the coming hours and days what the circumstances around this very tragic incident are. People in the city I've talked to are very shocked.

"It's not something we wanted to wake up to any day, any week and it can't have been a very nice scene for those who found the bodies this morning to have gone in to and our thoughts go to them as well.

"The police have been understandably very vague until now, and I would ask anyone who can help with their investigation to do so. It's a shocking incident.

"The scale of it, to lose three citizens of our city in one day, in one incident is quite shocking to take in. It's a very, very sad day for our city."

Ulster Unionist councillor David Taylor said the news had caused disbelief.

"I am extremely saddened to hear of the tragic news breaking in Newry where the bodies of three people have been discovered at Glin Ree Court in the city," he said.

"There is understandably great shock within the local community regarding this news and my thoughts and prayers are with the family members of the deceased at this time.

"Obviously the PSNI are in the early stages of their investigation into this incident and they will need time to establish the full details as to how these three tragic deaths have occurred."

DUP MLA William Irwin said: "This is an awful tragedy and I understand police have commenced investigations into this very concerning discovery.

"I extend my sincerest sympathy, thoughts and prayers to the wider family of the deceased individuals at this awful time." Sinn Fein councillor Charlie Casey offered his sympathies to the families of those involved.

"Details are still emerging and a police investigation is under way and that should be allowed to proceed," he said.

"I would encourage anyone with information on this incident to bring it forward to the PSNI."

Independent councillor David Hyland said it was awful to hear of the incident. "There's a tremendous sense of shock in the city. I don't know the people involved, but it's very concerning to have this happen on your doorstep," he said.

"You normally hear of these types of incidents, murder suicides, happening around the world, not in a quiet residential area like Glin Ree Court."

Flowers carried by members of an emotional family arrived at the scene last night.

Belfast Telegraph

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph