Elderly couple deny killing disabled granddaughter

Denying manslaughter: Glengormley couple David and Sarah Johnston pictured outside Laganside Courts in Belfast. Pic by Stephen Hamilton /Presseye.com
Denying manslaughter: Glengormley couple David and Sarah Johnston pictured outside Laganside Courts in Belfast. Pic by Stephen Hamilton /Presseye.com
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A GLENGORMLEY couple aged in their 80s have gone on trial accused of sexually assaulting and killing their profoundly disabled teenage granddaughter 11 years ago.

The trial of 88-year-old David Johnston and his wife Sarah, 86, got under way at Belfast Crown Court on Tuesday, April 24.

At the beginning of an hour-long opening statement, a prosecution lawyer warned the seven men and five women on the jury that many aspects of the evidence they would hear during the trial would be “distressing” and “unpalatable”. But he stressed that at the end of it, they will have to decide on the couple’s guilt or innocence.

The elderly couple, from Carwood Drive, deny the manslaughter of their 14-year-old granddaughter Rebecca McKeown on March 24, 2001 and cruelty towards her five days earlier on March 19.

The trial continues.

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