Hunt for killer goes on as arrest is made
A 39-YEAR-OLD man was arrested last night by police investigating the murder of Jennifer Dornan.
He was questioned on suspicion of withholding information and remained in custody last night.
He is the first person to have been arrested in connection with the killing of the mother-of-three.
The killer is also being sought by detectives for seven counts of attempted murder after the family next door to the mum-of-three narrowly escaped injury in the blaze.
The neighbours, who have since been housed in temporary accommodation, were told they were just minutes from death after the fire which started in the bedroom of Ms Dornan’s house spread to their adjoining semi.
The couple and five children were sleeping and were rescued by firefighters.
Their home in the Hazel View area of Lagmore remains closed off while crime-scene investigators continue to collect evidence from Ms Dornan’s house.
Detectives are also to examine CCTV footage from a camera positioned at the neighbouring property to see whether the killer was recorded entering Ms Dornan’s home in the early hours of Sunday morning.
Ms Dornan is to be buried in Belfast City Cemetery after Requiem Mass in Christ the Redeemer Church Lagmore tomorrow.
Mourners have been asked not to send flowers but instead to send donations to a GoFundMe page set up to raise money for Ms Dornan’s children that has to date raised more than £14,000.
Toys and clothes have also been donated to the young family who lost everything in the fire.
Ms Dornan’s sons Martin (eight) and Jayden (five) and daughter Abbey (three) are being comforted by their grandmother at her home in north Belfast.
The 30-year-old’s partner Martin Smith is in prison but is expected to apply for compassionate parole to attend the funeral.
In a notice in The Irish News today he says: “You were not just my girlfriend, you were also my best friend.
“You were never meant to leave me, you were never meant to go, how do I go on without you I don’t know.
“One step at a time is all that I can do, because each day that passes Jennifer I will be nearer to you. Love you always and forever, your heartbroken boyfriend.”
Police launched a murder inquiry on Monday after a postmortem examination showed Ms Dornan had been murdered and the fire set by the killer in an attempt to hide the evidence.
Witnesses reported seeing a silver car speeding from the scene on Stewartstown Road in the early hours and it is believed the driver stopped at a nearby garage.
Detectives are examining CCTV footage from the garage to establish whether the car was connected to the murder.
One line of enquiry is that the killer may have been known to Ms Dornan and appeared to have been aware that her children were not at home on Saturday night.
Ms Dornan had been on a night out with friends on Saturday in the Devenish complex in Finaghy.