A man charged with the murder of Co Armagh woman Katie Simpson has also been charged with rape.
Jonathan Creswell (35) previously of Briar Hill Gardens, Greysteel but now with an address which cannot be published, is charged with murdering Middletown woman Ms Simpson on August 3, 2020, having allegedly become enraged with jealousy on discovering she’d spent the night with a male friend.
It is now further alleged he raped Ms Simpson at some point from August 2-3, 2020.
Previously Derry/Londonderry Magistrates’ Court heard four female associates of Creswell were being joined to the case for allegedly covering-up in the aftermath of Ms Simpson’s death.
Court papers now show Rose De-Montmorency Wright (22) of Craigantlet Road, Newtownards is accused of withholding information between October 9, 2020 and October 13, 2021 by knowing Creswell had committed assault.
She lived with Creswell, his partner (Katie’s elder sister) and their children, at the time of Katie’s death, later moving to England where she would be arrested and brought back to Northern Ireland for questioning.
De Montmorency was part of the final group of four who carried Katie’s coffin to her grave in the small country churchyard of St Vindic’s in Tynan, County Armagh.
Jill Robinson (41) from Blackfort Road, Omagh who was the first to be arrested over the alleged cover-up, is accused of perverting the course of justice by taking Creswell’s clothes on August 3, 2020 and washing them in an external launderette.
Another woman, who is also accused of perverting the course of justice and withholding information has been granted an interim reporting restriction having claimed to be at risk of self-harm if publicly named.
Her lawyers are in the process of obtaining evidence by way of a psychiatric report.
The case was scheduled to be returned for trial today (April 5) at Derry/Londonderry Magistrates’ Court after significant delays which brought numerous warnings by District Judge Barney McElhome.
However, while the case against Creswell is almost ready to proceed, lawyers for the women – who all work in the equestrian industry – expressed concerns as they had only received case papers the previous week and required time to study these in-depth.
Judge McElhome agreed to list the committal for all accused on May 24.