Garda investigation into murdered Cork toddler Santina Cawley almost complete

Garda investigation into murdered Cork toddler Santina Cawley almost complete
Santina Cawley. Picture: Provision

Gardaí have almost completed their investigation into the murder of a Cork toddler earlier this summer and are putting together a file for the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Santina Cawley was found with critical injuries at the Elderwood flat complex in Boreenmanna Road in Cork city on July 5. She was rushed by ambulance to Cork University Hospital (CUH) where she died a few hours later.

A post mortem examination was carried out on two-year-old Santina at Cork University Hospital by Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster. It indicated that the death was murder.

The results were not released for operational reasons. However, it is understood that Santina sustained numerous injuries to her head, neck and body in addition to bone fractures.

A woman, who is not a relative of the child, was detained for questioning by gardaí in relation in the death on July 8.

Santina was laid to rest on July 12. Chief celebrant at the mass Fr Oscar O'Leary told mourners at the Cathedral of St Mary and St Anne that Santina Cawley was a happy child who was cherished by her family.

She is survived by her parents Bridget and Michael and her siblings Candice, Michael, Patrick and Thomas.

In a statement issued after the mass the family said that they would forever mourn the loss of their precious Santina. They also expressed gratitude to members of the public who raised funds through a Go Fund page which paid for the funeral.

The Go Fund me page reached its target of €8,000 in just nine hours. It was closed when it quickly climbed to €12,425.

In an interview after the death of her child on Cork's Red FM Bridget O’Donoghue said that she was trying to keep strong for her other children.

But my heart is broken - my world is destroyed. Her brothers and her sister are heartbroken as well - she used to put a smile on their faces.

“I had plans for her like playschool, school, a future, a life - she only turned two in May - but now she’s gone. All I want now is justice for her, for her to be able to rest."

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