Man goes on trial for Portstewart killing

A 55-year old man accused of murdering his ex-partner was consumed by 'a burning resentment' after she ended their relationship, a jury heard on Thursday.

Thursday, 14th September 2017, 7:01 pm
Updated Thursday, 14th September 2017, 7:07 pm
Marion Millican. Picture: Pacemaker

Marion Millican was shot in the chest with a double-barrelled shotgun as she and colleague ate their lunch in the Portstewart launderette where they worked in March 2011.

Standing trial at Belfast Crown Court is Mrs Millican’s former boyfriend Fred McClenaghan, who claimed it was not his intention to kill her, but rather commit suicide in front of her.

However, as the trial was opened to a jury of seven women and five men, a crown barrister rejected McClenaghan’s claim.

Rick Weir QC told the jury it was the crown’s view that the death of the 51-year old woman as “not an accident ... this was a case, simply, of murder”.

The prosecuting barrister said that in the direct aftermath of the shooting, McClenaghan, from Broad Street in Magherafelt, told a woman, “I shot a girl in Portstewart.”

When he was arrested, McClenaghan refused to answer questions, but subsequently said in a statement given to police that it was his intention to kill himself and that he was “truly sorry” for Mrs Millican’s death.

He has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mrs Millican on the afternoon of March 11, 2011.