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Man appears in court charged with murdering Lurgan mum-to-be Natalie McNally

Stephen McCullagh

A man has appeared in court charged with murdering Lurgan mum-to-be Natalie McNally.

The accused is Stephen McCullagh, of Woodlands Gardens in Lisburn.

The 32-year-old is charged with the murder of Natalie McNally and he appeared before Lisburn Magistrates’ Court today (Thursday).

His appearance in court came more than six weeks after her brutal killing at her Silverwood Green home on Sunday, December 18.

Ms McNally and her unborn son Dean died as a result of the attack.

The suspect, who was initially the first person arrested having reported Natalie’s death to police on December 19, was subsequently released and publicly eliminated from the inquiry.

However, the 32-year-old was re-arrested on Tuesday in the Lisburn area and has today (Thursday) been charged with her murder.

He was officially charged in the early hours of this morning (Thursday), before his appearance in court.

The defendant appeared before the court via videolink from Laganside Custody Suite.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil McGuinness appeared before the court to connect the accused to the charges.

The court heard that CCTV evidence, witness evidence and “cyber enquiries” led to the defendant’s re-arrest, with police having investigated CCTV from a bus, and a livestream from the defendant’s YouTube channel on the day of the offence.

A defence barrister, Craig Patton, told the court that a bail application was being made for the defendant.

Objecting to bail, a prosecutor told the court that the defendant was “capable of deception beyond imagination.”

Defence counsel questioned the possibility of interference with witnesses, saying that he had no one to interfere with in the case.

District Judge Rosie Watters refused bail and adjourned the case with the defendant to appear via videolink before Craigavon court on February 24.

More to follow.

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