Since 1925, a startling number of young women have been found dead in the Dublin-Wicklow Mountains. The small winding roads, the dense foliage and the isolation have combined to make the area a favourite burial ground amongst murderers.
A number of women have also disappeared in the vicinity in recent years, and it is widely speculated that they too lie in unmarked graves in the mountains. There are many who believe that at least one serial killer has used the mountains to bury his victims.
Starting with the death of prostitute Honor Bright, Where No One Can Hear You Scream examines in detail cases such as the murder in Christmas 1979 of Phyllis Murphy, whose killer John Crerar was convicted over 20 years later after advances in DNA. It also looks at the unsolved murders of Anthoinette Smith in 1987 and Patricia Doherty in 1991. The women’s bodies were found within a mile of one another, prompting speculation that they were killed by the same person.
In December 1994 a young woman was brutally raped by two men on Powerscourt Mountain. Sarah McInerney examins this horrific case and the trial of the men involved. She also looks at the sexual assault cases involving Philip Colgan, Larry Murphy and Robert Quigley: three dangerous men whose brutal impulses had horrific repercussions for their victims. Once again the common thread linking all these cases is the bleak backdrop of the Wicklow Mountains.
With the assistance of the Gardaí, and the families concerned, Where No One Can Hear You Scream describes these and other cases with compassion and honesty. And through it all, the Dublin-Wicklow Mountains, which have been host to so much violence and horror and death, loom large.
Sarah McInerney is a Political Correspondent with the Sunday Times. She graduated from Dublin City University with a BA in Journalism in 2003. Before taking up her current post she worked for five years with the Sunday Tribune, where she covered stories of national and international importance. She is also a regular contributor to news and current affairs programmes on national television and radio. Where No One Can Hear You Scream was her first book.