Mother-of-two found dead in Donegal was aspiring actress and model

Mother-of-two found dead in Donegal was aspiring actress and model

A young mother-of-two died after suffering suspected knife wounds at her home in Co Donegal.

Jasmine McMonagle, an aspiring actress and model, was found dead at her home when elite members of the gardaí's Regional Response Unit stormed the house in Killygordon in the early hours of this morning.

The 27-year-old had contacted gardaí just minutes beforehand to report a domestic disturbance at her home at Forest Park on the outskirts of the East Donegal village.

Ms McMonagle shared the home with her partner Richard Burke, who is originally from Donegal Town.

Jasmine McMonagle
Jasmine McMonagle

Gardaí received the call from the distressed woman at 4.20am.

However, when they arrived at 4.47am, they were refused entry to the house at Forest Park on the outskirts of the East Donegal village.

At this stage, there was an altercation with gardaí. A decision was then made to call in the Regional Response Unit who arrived on scene a short time later.

The couple's two children, aged 7 and 1, were taken from the house and are understood to be unhurt. They were taken to be cared for by family members.

A man was arrested around 7.30am and taken to Letterkenny garda station, where he is currently being interviewed by gardaí. The man can be held for up to 48 hours without being charged.

The scene of the attack was preserved by gardaí this morning.

Mother-of-two found dead in Donegal was aspiring actress and model

Gardaí also carried out door-to-door enquiries this afternoon to ask neighbours whether they may have witnessed anything that may help the investigation.

Both the state pathologist Linda Mulligan and members of the Garda Technical Bureau from Dublin arrived at the scene of the incident this afternoon.

At around 3pm, Ms McMonagle's body was removed to Letterkenny General Hospital.

Neighbours have reacted with shock to the death of Ms McMonagle who is originally from the border town of Castlefinn.

Neighbour Damian Scanlon, who lives directly across from the scene of the incident, said he was awoken by shouting and screaming at around 5am.

"There was a lot of Garda activity but I just thought it was a party or something so I went back to bed," he said. "I awoke again after 7am and this time I saw gardaí everywhere including guys with shields and helmets."

Mr Scanlon said he did not know the family personally but added that Forest Park was a lovely estate with lots of children in it.

"I live in England but I come back a lot for holidays and I was back for a couple of weeks for Christmas. It's a lovely estate and you have lots of children here. There were plenty of children out playing here over Christmas on go-karts and bikes.

"This is the last thing that you would expect to happen," he added.

Mother-of-two found dead in Donegal was aspiring actress and model

Local county councillor Gary Doherty, who is from the same village as Ms McMonagle, said the incident was just tragic.

"The whole community is in shock at the tragic news coming from Killygordon this morning," he said.

My deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of the young woman who has sadly lost her life so prematurely.

Inspector Michael Harrison gave a brief statement on behalf of gardaí outside Letterkenny Garda station yesterday afternoon.

“Gardaí are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of a woman at Forest Park, Killygordon, Co Donegal this morning," he said.

“The woman was pronounced dead at the scene. The office of the State Pathologist has been informed and is currently en route to the scene.

“The assistance of the Garda Technical Bureau has been requested and we expect them to be at the scene sometime this afternoon.

“A man in his 20s has been arrested and is currently being detained under the terms of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984.

“At this stage of the investigation, I’m not in a position to answer any further questions or make any more statements.”


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