A horrified neighbour of three siblings stabbed to death in their Irish home has spoken of his shock at seeing a child being dangled from a window.
Lisa Cash, 18, and eight-year-old twins Christy and Chelsea Cawley were killed, leaving neighbours in Tallaght, South Dublin, in a state of disbelief.
One man, who witnessed one of the children being thrown from the window, told the Irish Mirror : “Everybody is shocked. I ran out and I saw the child being dangled from the window and I was shouting along with the gardai and other neighbours, ‘Please don’t do that’.
“And next of all he dropped the child… they had the spotlight up on the house and lasers pointing at him but they couldn’t shoot him because he would have dropped the child anyway.”
He added: “I was in bed actually when I first heard the screams.
“There were lots of people out on the road. The guards had to use a ram bar about eight times to get into the house.”
One neighbour, who asked to remain anonymous, said she heard shouting but assumed it was a family squabble and never expected the horror which unfolded.
The woman, who was crying and shaking at her front door, added: “We all thought it was just an argument. Most people on the road assumed it was a fight between family.
“None of us actually thought anything like that was going on.
“We had to tell our kids this morning that their two friends that they play with every day had gone to heaven.
“This is like something you’d hear about happening in America – not here. They were such lovely kids. Christy was a lovely little fella, he was a little boy’s boy.
“He loved Man United and his twin Chelsea had a little cheeky face and she’d stick out her tongue.
“I’m not sure if it was a paramedic or a guard but I saw somebody pick up one of the kids who was covered in blood and rush them over to the ambulance. Everybody around here knows each other.”
Another said: “I think people would have rushed out sooner if they knew how bad things were.” A grandad who asked just to be referred to as Peter, added: “It’s devastating for the whole community.
“Them kids played with my grandkids. I was only talking to them the other day. To see a child being thrown from the window is … those kids are dead.
“The family were lovely. The kids were only playing out on the road on Saturday evening. They were lovely, beautiful kids.
“It was so difficult being so close to it yet we couldn’t do anything about it and to find out this morning that they had passed away. It’s so horrible and tragic.
“How will anybody ever be able to live in that house again?
“It’s going to be a house of horrors. The guards tried their best to save those children.
“I think the family needs every bit of support they can get. How does the teacher in the morning tell all the children in the classroom, that they’re not coming back?
“Everybody in the community is really feeling it. That goes from a child right up. Everybody is heartbroken … the community will never be the same.”
A fellow neighbour who lived up the road recalled how he first heard a car joyriding around the estate earlier in the night and when he saw the gardai he assumed it was related to that.
He said: “This is usually a quiet area apart from a few bad people but you get that in any area.
“There’s a lot of good people who live here. They were out every day on their bikes or playing ball… it’s what they would have been doing now if they were still alive.”
Another said: “We saw it. There was kids and all here last night. I never thought I’d see something like that. We saw one of the kids being thrown out the window. I literally couldn’t believe it.”
Local Parish Priest Fr Bill O’Shaughnessy said: “When a community is faced with such a raw representation of abject evil it’s impossible to comprehend.
“It’s something so unnatural in that respect. The community is completely stunned and silenced that something like this has happened on such a terrible scale.
“All our thoughts and prayers are with the family… what this family will have to face is no small thing.
“It’ll only be in the days to come that more details will emerge. It’s just a horrifying act. There is no sense or meaning to it in any sense.
“The only reaction to this is shock because of the nature of it. There are no winners to this and it’s terrible for the entire community and wider Tallaght area.”