Gardai are confident DNA found at a murder scene will positively identify schoolgirl Anastasia ‘Ana’ Kriegel’s killer.
The 14-year-old was beaten to death with bricks and sticks, and subjected to a serious sexual assault in an abandoned farmhouse in Lucan, Co Dublin.
Gardai are eager to question a 13-year-old boy, who was known to Ana, and who they believe is key to this murder investigation.
He was one of two teenage boys who were the last to see Ana on Monday evening, the day she disappeared. Gardai believe she was murdered that day. Detectives spoke to the boys the day after she was reported missing as part of their investigation.
Senior investigating officers hope to recover the killer’s DNA from the victim, her clothing, which was found near the body, and bloodstains in the building. The results from DNA tests are expected over the weekend.
A forensic examination of a mobile phone owned by the murdered girl may also yield vital clues to the identity of her killer.
A post-mortem examination by the Republic’s state pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy yesterday confirmed that Ana died from blunt force trauma to the head.
She had been savagely assaulted with a blunt weapon, possibly a brick, in the farmhouse at Clonee Road, near St Catherine’s Park. The teenager was then left for dead.
Her body was found without clothing, which was scattered nearby, on Thursday lunchtime at around 1pm.
Gardai believe the murder weapons were at the farmhouse rather than brought to the scene.
It’s believed Ana was murdered soon after she went missing. Her worried parents contacted gardai at 8.30pm on Monday when she hadn’t returned to her Leixlip, Co Kildare, home as it was out of character for her.
The popular teenager was last seen in St Catherine’s Park, Lucan, at 5.30pm that evening.
Her disappearance sparked an extensive search by gardai.
They had been tracking her phone signal which was pinging off a nearby mast and showed that the phone was within the St Catherine’s Park area.
Officers are now trying to track down friends and social media acquaintances, who had been in contact with Ana either earlier on Monday or over the weekend.
They have already contacted the families of some of her friends with the intention of taking statements to help build up a picture of her final hours.
Ana, who was originally from Russia, was adopted by her parents at the age of two and has a younger brother.
Supt John Gordon said the murder victim’s family were “extremely distressed” and appealed for privacy.
Officers yesterday combed the large field, searching for any evidence or clues to assist the murder investigation.
They believe Ana travelled through the field before being beaten to death at the abandoned farmhouse.
A primary theory being explored by detectives is that her killer had good local knowledge of the area. Officers have urged anyone with information to contact them.