Tuesday 18 September 2018

Doll found in exhumed grave of infant as couple buried fake baby

The closed grave where garda exhumed a body at Annagery, Co. Donegal. (North West Newspix)
The closed grave where garda exhumed a body at Annagery, Co. Donegal. (North West Newspix)

GardaI investigating the reported death of a newborn baby found a toy doll when they opened the grave.

A funeral service had been held in the village of Annagry in CoDonegal after a couple said they had a baby and that it had died.

A garda investigation had been launched after health officials could find no record of the woman giving birth to a child on the date the couple claimed it was born.

The couple, who live in the west of the county, had told their neighbours that they had a baby.  A short time later, they informed the neighbours that their baby was dead.

A funeral service was held with a child-size coffin brought to the church in Annagry. The coffin was then buried in the local cemetery.

Concerns were raised when a HSE official could find no documents relating to the birth of any child on the dates given by the couple.

Neither was there any birth to any woman bearing the couple’s surname during the period they had claimed.

The HSE then alerted gardai who launched an investigation.

Officers then interviewed the couple about the matter. It is understood the couple then admitted that a child had not been born to them.

They told gardai that they had placed a doll in the coffin and held the funeral.


HSE staff and gardai went to the cemetery and a tent was erected over the grave. The coffin was  dug up and the lid was removed. The doll was found inside it.

A source confirmed last night that gardai had found the doll and described the episode as “tragic”.

 Gardai investigating the incident will send a file on the matter to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

 A source said it was unlikely that the couple will face charges.

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