Wednesday 28 September 2016

Father and son killed in suspected murder suicide to be buried in separate graves

Luke Byrne and David Raleigh

Published 21/07/2016 | 02:30

Scene of crash (Inset: Marco Velocci, Jodie Power and Alex Velocci)
Scene of crash (Inset: Marco Velocci, Jodie Power and Alex Velocci)

The mother of the young boy killed in a suspected murder-suicide crash in Limerick is said to be "inconsolable" in hospital.

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Jodie Power (26) was stabbed during a violent domestic incident with her ex-partner Marco Velocci on Tuesday.

Jodie Power's son Alex (3)
Jodie Power's son Alex (3)

Mr Velocci (28) then fled her home with their young son Alex (3) and "drove deliberately" at a truck on the N24 between Pallasgreen and Oola in Co Limerick just after 8.30am.

Mr Velocci and his son were killed instantly after his car was seen by witnesses veering into the path of an oncoming articulated truck, smashing head-on into the heavy goods vehicle. The driver of the lorry, who escaped serious injury, is said to be severely traumatised.

Jodie Power's ex-partner Marco Velocci
Jodie Power's ex-partner Marco Velocci

A post-mortem was completed last night and now the family are preparing for the grim task of bringing the bodies home.

It is expected Mr Velocci and his son will be mourned at individual funerals, and that they will be buried in separate graves.

Sources said gardaí had not yet interviewed Jodie Power, who underwent surgery for a broken arm and is in a stable condition at University Hospital Limerick. The sources also said she was "inconsolable" as she tried to come to terms with the death of her beloved son.

The Oola native has an 18-month-old son from a separate relationship. The infant is being cared for by his father at his home in Tipperary.

Her parents Elizabeth and Perry, from Oola, and two brothers James and Perry Jnr, were being comforted by family and friends last night.

The truck driver involved in the horrific crash did everything he could to avoid the collision, according to deputy mayor of the city and county of Limerick Noel Gleeson.

Jodie Power
Jodie Power

"I feel sorry for the lorry driver, as I understand it he did his best to try and avoid the crash," said the Fianna Fáil councillor.

"Something like this, when it happens in a really small area, it's bad for country life."

The car is removed from the crash site Picture: Damien Eagers
The car is removed from the crash site Picture: Damien Eagers

Mr Gleeson said that both Ms Power and her ex-partner Mr Velocci were well known in the area and both came from respected families. The pair had been partners for many years but had separated.

Local man Joe Meagher, a former councillor, said the atmosphere in the area was one of sadness.

A garda directs traffic away from the N24 Photo: Damien Eagers
A garda directs traffic away from the N24 Photo: Damien Eagers

"They are stunned. There's sympathy here for both families," he said. "I know both families, they have been living in the area a long time. It's an unimaginable tragedy."

The findings of post-mortems on the bodies of the father and son will not be confirmed for weeks, as authorities await toxicology test results.

The truck after the crash on the N24 Photo: Damien Eagers
The truck after the crash on the N24 Photo: Damien Eagers

The post-mortems were completed shortly after 7pm last night by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Louise Mulligan at University Hospital Limerick.

The bodies of Mr Velocci and Alex are expected to be released to their families today. Loved ones will then have to begin the grim task of organising the funerals of the little boy and his father.

A source said "nothing of note was discovered" in the post-mortems.

The scene of the collision on the N24 between Pallasgreen and Oola in Co Limerick Credit: Damien Eagers
The scene of the collision on the N24 between Pallasgreen and Oola in Co Limerick Credit: Damien Eagers

It is expected Mr Velocci and his son will be mourned at individual funerals, and that they will be buried in separate graves.

Gardaí are also to trawl through social media sites to see if Mr Velocci left any digital footprints of his thoughts or plans in the days and hours leading up to his death and the death of his son, in a suspected murder-suicide.

Irish Independent

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