United Kingdom

Man and grown-up sons found dead on Irish farm 'in murder-suicide'

A father and his two grown-up sons have been found dead on an Irish farm in an alleged murder-suicide over the inheritance.

The father, 59, and his two sons, aged 22 and 25, were found dead at Assolas near Kanturk, County Cork, on Monday.

Neighbours called the police at around 6.30am to report that a distraught woman was saying that gunshots had gone off in her home.

The shootings were related to simmering tensions over a will and the inheritance of the 150-acre farm, the Irish Times reported.

Farm buildings at he scene of a fatal shooting at Assolas, near Kanturk, County Cork

A police SUV is seen on the farmland in remote County Cork on Monday

'Gardaí were informed that three males were present in the house, and that one male may have suffered from gunshot wounds,' a Garda spokesman said. 

Detectives said that one of the sons and his mother had returned to the family home on Sunday night after spending time away.

That son was shot dead in his bedroom, according to The Times. The mother, in her 60s, managed to flee the home and raise the alarm.

While the police were on their way to the home, they were informed that further gunfire had been heard.

They requested back-up and established a wide cordon around the property.

An Armed Emergency Response Unit from Cork was dispatched along with ambulances and a police negotiator put on stand-by. 

Police were aware of three firearms on the property – two rifles and a double-barrelled shotgun – so they held off outside.

The negotiator tried to make contact with anyone who might be inside but there was no answer.

Just after 12.30pm, an armed unit who had been summoned from Dublin breached the doors.

One of the sons was found dead, he had sustained a gunshot wound and was alone inside the home, in his bedroom.

The outhouses and barns were searched and the Garda Air Support Unit was called in, as well as the North Cork Divisional Search Team to scour the fields. 

The shootings were related to simmering tensions over a will and the inheritance of the 150-acre farm in the remote neighbourhood of Assolas in County Cork

At around 1.45pm, the Air Support Unit said it had spotted two bodies in a field close to the property.

The father and son had suffered gunshot wounds and there were two firearms next to them.

A Garda source told the Times it was 'a terrible tragedy.' The police said they were not looking for anyone else in connection with the incident.

Forensic investigations are ongoing, as well as analysis by ballistics experts.

A family liaison officer is looking after the woman who fled the property. 

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