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Domestic violence Son of murdered Ciara Campbell says brutal murder is his only memory of her

'I can’t remember anything else from my childhood, except that one day. It’s the only thing I have of my ma'


Ciara Campbell and Jamie

Ciara Campbell and Jamie

Ciara Campbell and Jamie

The son of murdered Ciara Campbell has said that her murder is his only childhood memory.

Appearing on RTÉ Investigates: Domestic Abuse, A Year in Crisis, Jamie Campbell told the programme “it’s the first thing I see every morning," Jamie told RTÉ Investigates.

She was brutally killed by her former partner Gordie Molloy at their home in Carlow in 2007.

"I remember walking from the kitchen. My mother was struggling with Gordie, run, Jamie, run," she shouted.

"I saw him stab my ma. Her final words were basically to save me. I can’t remember anything else from my childhood, except that one day. It’s the only thing I have of my ma," he shared.

22-year-old Ciara was stabbed 27 times in the attack that occurred five weeks after she ended their two year relationship.

Molloy, who was convicted of her murder, had been abusive throughout their relationship, however her family were not aware of the true scale of what was happening.

"We didn’t realise half of what was going on," her father, Micheal Cunningham told the programme.

He said that after she ended their relationship, things began to deteriorate.

“It got worse and worse. He was parked outside the house, he left the car outside. He would turn up in pubs, he would play mind games."

Her friend Alice Keaton said "it was like she could not have been with anyone before him," discussing the fact Molloy also subjected young Ciara to coercive control.

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"It was like she could not have a past.”

“By the way he was treating her, he was cutting her off, so he could have her to himself. He only wanted her his way. Ciara didn’t know where to turn, she thought she could control it herself."

Ciara was one of at least 108 women who died at the hands of a partner or ex-partner between 1996 and 2022.

Another such woman featured on the RTE special was 24-year-old Lisa Doyle.

She was strangled to death by her fiance Gerard O’Hara at their home in Carlow in 2009, nine months before they were due to get married.

Lisa’s sister Angela Doyle Stuart told the programme that she didn’t appear to be a victim of domestic abuse before her death as there were no obvious signs of physical abuse or allegations of violence.

"When you are piecing it all together, you realise there was control," she said.

"He was controlling the keys to the home…. He would turn up on girls’ nights out.”

“I learnt afterwards that Lisa had no money to go for lunch with friends. He was controlling the money," she added.

O’Hara was found guilty of the murder and sentenced to life imprisonment.

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