Family face alleged double killer in court

Marjorie and Michael Cawdery
Marjorie and Michael Cawdery

The family of an elderly couple killed in their home have come face-to-face with the man accused of their murder.

Filling two rows of the public gallery at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday, the family of Michael and Marjorie Cawdery watched as 40-year-old Thomas Scott McEntee stood in the dock flanked by two psychiatric nurses.

McEntee, currently residing the Shannon mental health clinic in Belfast but who has an address at Moorfield Court in Kilkeel, confirmed he was aware of the nine charges against him.

He is accused of the double murder of Michael and Marjorie Cawdery on May 26 last year. The couple, both 83, were found dead in their Portadown home on May 26.

Previous courts have heard claims that McEntee was armed with a knife when he allegedly broke into the couple’s Upper Ramone Park home in Craigavon.

He is alleged to have stolen a cheque book and keys before stealing the couple’s car.

As well as two counts of murder, McEntee is also charged with aggravated burglary and aggravated vehicle theft of a Renault Kangoo which was damaged.

On the same date, McEntee is also accused of two counts of theft, stealing a bottle of red wine, a torch and a compass, indecent exposure by exposing his person to a female and on May 24, he is alleged to have burgled a house on Derrybeg Lane in Newry.

Prosecuting lawyer Joseph Murphy submitted there was a Prima Facie case against McEntee, a submission which defence counsel took no issue with and deputy district judge Austin Kennedy said that, having read the papers, he was satisfied there was a case to answer.

The court clerk told McEntee, who appeared wearing a grey hoodie and blue denim jeans, that although not obliged to, he had the right to comment on the charges or call evidence to the preliminary enquiry, but the alleged killer declined.

Remanding McEntee back into custody, the judge returned the case to Belfast Crown Court and ordered McEntee to appear there for his arraignment on a date to be fixed.