Family’s worst nightmare comes true after frantic search effort
AS FAMILIES and walkers enjoyed the sunshine in St Catherine’s Park yesterday afternoon, they were oblivious to the tragedy that was unfolding just a few hundred yards away at a derelict farmhouse.
In the abandoned building, littered with rubbish and its walls scrawled with graffiti, the lifeless body of Ana Kriegel was discovered. This is not how it should have ended for a sensitive and intelligent child.
The young girl had been missing for three days. A frantic search had been
initiated for the popular teen, her family and the search teams were unaware that her body had been hidden at the property for a number of days.
Her family and loved ones had hoped since Monday evening that she would turn up unharmed.
A number of public appeals were made, and images of the smiling 14-year-old girl were circulated across social media in the hope that someone, anyone had seen Ana alive.
Throughout the days she was missing, concerns increased as the hours turned into days. For Ana not to contact her parents for so long was completely out of character.
Who can imagine what they were going through?
Indeed, she had come from a loving and caring home in the nearby Newtown Park estate, and had never left for such a long period before.
This prompted gardaí to immediately call in support for the search, including the Civil Defence, as the disappearance was immediately taken with the utmost seriousness.
Tragically, shortly after 1pm yesterday afternoon, her family’s worst nightmares were realised.
Ana, described as a “striking young girl”, was found at the premises near the Clonee Road, and her family were immediately notified.
Senior investigators were called, and it wasn’t long before grave suspicions were raised that Ana’s promising life had come to a violent end.
The scene was sealed-off and a full investigation launched, and as the hours passed and more examinations carried out, the fears that Ana had been murdered were confirmed.
The community in Leixlip was last night trying to make sense of the unimaginable tragedy that had befallen the Kildare parish.
The dance school of which she was a member cancelled its classes, as grieving members attempted to come to terms with the tragedy.
Supt John Gordon, who is overseeing the investigation, summed up the pain. He said: “As you can imagine at this time [her family] are receiving a lot of support from An Garda Síochána but they are extremely distressed and they are also looking for the public assistance, and privacy at his time as well.”
A Garda crime scene investigator at the derelict house where the body of Ana Kriegel was found yesterday. Photo: Damien Eagers
Left: Ana Kriegel; Inset: the entrance to St Catherine’s Park, near where her body was found. Right: State Pathologist Marie Cassidy speaks to a detective at the scene at Clonee Road. Photos: Damien Eagers and Gerry Mooney