Sunday 19 November 2017

Gardaí thank public for help following fresh appeal into 1987 triple murder house fire

The fire scene where Barbara Doyle died with her two nieces
Fire victims Mary Ellen Byrne (8) (left) and her sister Kerrie Ann Byrne (3) (right), pictured with their mother Elizabeth Byrne
Barbara Doyle

Rebecca Lumley

Gardaí have thanked members of the public who came forward with information about a triple murder that occurred 30 years ago.

Cold case detectives revealed earlier this week that they believe a house fire which claimed the lives of a young woman and her two nieces in 1987 was set deliberately.

The fire, which occurred in Church Lane, Kilcock, Co Kildare on September 20, killed Barbara Doyle (20) and her nieces Mary Ellen Byrne (8) and Kerrie Byrne (3).

Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche today thanked those who have provided information, and said; "We are satisfied there are people who will remember this fire and the deaths of Barbara, Mary Ellen, and Kerrie, and who have not yet spoken to Gardaí."

Fire victims Mary Ellen Byrne (8) (left) and her sister Kerrie Ann Byrne (3) (right), pictured with their mother Elizabeth Byrne
Fire victims Mary Ellen Byrne (8) (left) and her sister Kerrie Ann Byrne (3) (right), pictured with their mother Elizabeth Byrne

The blaze was reported between 3am and 4am on the Sunday morning, when the children’s’ parents were at a 21st birthday party.

Ms Doyle, who was minding the children, was a sister of their mother, Elizabeth Byrne.

Barbara Doyle
Barbara Doyle

Gardai said the investigation into the fire has remained open for the last 30 years.

Detectives said new evidence has been discovered and they believe the fire was started deliberately.

The fire scene where Barbara Doyle died with her two nieces
The fire scene where Barbara Doyle died with her two nieces

An incident room has been set up at Leixlip Garda station and cold-case detectives from the serious crime review team are assisting local officers.

Anyone with information is has been asked to contact Leixlip Garda Station at 01-6667800 or the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666 111.

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