herald

Tuesday 16 October 2018

DPP rules out criminal charges over halting site inferno that left 10 dead

The scene at Carrickmines
The scene at Carrickmines

No criminal charges will be brought over the deaths of 10 people in a fire at a Carrickmines halting site.

Five adults and five children died of carbon monoxide poisoning during the blaze in the early hours of October 10, 2015.

The Director of Public Prosecutions made her decision after An Garda Siochana submitted a case file on the fire.

No relatives of the victims were present at Dublin Coroner's Court as Detective Inspector Martin Creighton informed the coroner of the DPP's decision.

Smoke

The full inquest into the deaths will be heard before a jury over a two-week period early next year.

Coroner Dr Myra Cullinane issued provisional dates for the inquest hearing to take place in January.

The coroner's office will now work with Dun Laoghaire County Council, gardai and Dublin Fire Brigade to draw up a list of witnesses to give evidence.

The victims were Thomas Connors (27), his wife Sylvia (30) and their children Jim (5), Christy (3) and Mary (6 months); Willie Lynch (25) and his partner Tara Gilbert (27), who was pregnant, and their daughters Jodie (9) and Kelsey (4), and Jimmy Lynch (39), a brother of Willie.

All those killed were residents of Glenamuck halting site in Carrickmines, Dublin 24.

The five adults and four of the children were identified using DNA evidence with the assistance of Dr Alan Magee.

Baby Mary Connors was formally identified by a relative, Dan Connors, at the children's accident and emergency department of Tallaght Hospital in Dublin 24.

The 10 post-mortem examinations were carried out by State Pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy and Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster.

The cause of death returned for all 10 victims was acute carbon monoxide poisoning owing to smoke inhalation.

A legal representative for Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council was represented at the short inquest hearing.

Queries

The DPP's office had issued a number of queries to gardai based on the file submitted and consideration of the issue continued for a number of months.

Det-Insp Creighton told the court that the DPP's decision had been received and circulated to all parties.

"I am now in a position to hear the inquest which will take place over a number of days before a jury," Dr Cullinane said.

The coroner adjourned proceedings and issued a provisional start date for the full inquest to commence on January 14, 2019.

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