Man faces murder charge over third ex

Published Thursday, 27 March 2014
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A Co Down stonemason already charged with the murder of two ex-girlfriends is now set to be prosecuted over the murder of a third former partner.

Man faces murder charge over third ex
Dromore murder victims Lily McKee, Michelle Bickerstaff and Margaret Weise. (© Pacemaker)

Leslie Ross, 66 and from Meganlis Park in Dromore, was informed of the decision by the Public Prosecution Service at a court hearing in Newry on Thursday.

The fresh charge will relate to the death of Lily McKee, a 52-year-old mother-of-one from Dromore, who died in 2002.

Ross was charged and remanded in custody last year over the deaths of 50-year-old Margaret Weise and 47-year-old Michelle Bickerstaff, both in Dromore, in August 2007 and April 2012 respectively.

At the time the charges were brought against him, a file on Ms McKee's case was passed to the Public Prosecution Service (PPS).

Following assessment, the PPS has decided to prosecute.

A spokeswoman for the Public Prosecution Service confirmed: "Today in court, the PPS advised the court that a decision has been taken to prosecute Leslie Ross for three murders."

Ross denies involvement in the deaths of all three women.

Meanwhile, charges of indecent assault, gross indecency with a child and indecently assaulting a child - all between 1979 and 1990 - have been withdrawn by the PPS.

It is understood that they will later be pursued through separate court proceedings.

PSNI investigations into the circumstances surrounding the death of another woman in Dromore are said to be "ongoing".

Margaret Stronge, 58, who was known as Peggy, was found dead in Moss Lane in July 1982.

© UTV News
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