Distraught dad begged 'please say something' after finding daughter, 2, naked & lifeless after she was 'murdered by ex'

A DAD revealed the heartbreaking moment he found his naked daughter in a bloodstained room when she was allegedly murdered by his ex.

Santina Cawley, two, was found naked under a blanket after she suffered a fractured skull and traumatic brain injury.

Karen Harrington, who was in a relationship with the tot's dad Michael Cawley, is on trial at the Central Criminal Court in Ireland for her murder.

He told jurors how he had returned to Harrington's home in Cork to find a neighbour frantically rushing over to him.

The neighbour told him she heard his partner screaming and little Santina crying, it was said.

The dad told the jurors he entered the home to discover blood covering the kitchen, chairs on the floor and broken glass littering the ground.

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Michael then found his critically injured daughter on a sofa covered by a blanket.

He told the court: "I said to Karen, ‘What is going on?’

“I pulled the blanket off her. Santina was naked – no clothes on her. She was wearing clothes when I left.

"Santina did not look right in the face. One of her eyes was half-closed, the other eye opened. There was a bruise on the left side of her forehead.

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“I checked her pulse. She was warm. I tried to speak to her. I was down on my knees – ‘Santina please, Santina please say something please’. She wasn’t responding."

Emergency crews were scrambled to the home where Harrington allegedly told Michael the blood was from her foot.

She was arrested and later charged with murder following the horror in July 2019.

Michael said: "I was crying my heart out. I was in bits. I was in shock.”

The court was told Santina had suffered multiple traumatic injuries with bruises found on almost every single part of her body.

Police also discovered blood stains and clumps of the toddler's hair near the sofa where they had been ripped out, jurors heard.


Michael had been in a relationship with Harrington since December 2018 and regularly stayed at her home with Santina.

On the night she died, he and Harrington had been drinking with pals when a row between their friends erupted – causing the defendant to leave their flat.

Michael later took his daughter home and found Harrington lying down on a sofa so he left Santina in her hands while he went back out to look for his cousin.

Neighbour Dylan Olney then called police at 4.31am after he became concerned about a screaming child at the apartment.

Senior prosecuting Counsel Sean Gillane said: "Not only did he (Mr Olney) hear a child crying, he could hear the accused shouting directly at the child, mocking and taunting and terrorising the child.”

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Police arrived but after receiving no answer, they left the scene around 20 minutes before Michael returned home to the bloodbath.

The trial continues.

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