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CLYDACH MURDERS: Firemen tell of discovery that victims had not died in blaze.

FIREFIGHTER John Campbell who was one of the first on the scene of the blaze left by the killer in Clydach told yesterday how it quickly became clear the victims had not died in a fire.

And he confirmed that water in a half-full bath believed to have been used by the killer to wash off blood would not have come from fire hoses. Mr Campbell, temporary station officer at Morriston Fire Station at the time of the murders, said an emergency call came at 4.27am on June 27, 1999.

He said, ``We made haste to 9 Kelvin Road and were told on the way there someone could be inside.

``When we got there the neighbours were in the street and the kitchen of the house was well alight.

``I instructed breathing apparatus teams to go in a search for casualties or persons trapped.

``The first BA crew came out with a casualty - I think it was one of the children. We had oxygen and everything waiting to do resuscitation because by this time the paramedics had not arrived.''

After the wounds on the victims were gradually discovered by the fire crews, one of the paramedics shouted, ``The casualties have not died in a fire.''

Mr Campbell was asked by Patrick Harrington, QC, prosecuting, if it was possible the fire service could have been responsible for the water found in a bath at the house.

He said, ``No, it was nothing to do with the fire service.''

Also giving evidence yesterday was off-duty fire officer Adrian Humphries, who at the time of the murders lived close to 9 Kelvin Road. He had been at the nearby Vardre RFC clubhouse in the hours before the killings. When he came home at around midnight he fell asleep downstairs and was awoken by his wife at around 4.30am.

He rushed to the scene and helped his uniformed firefighter colleagues tackle the fire.

He was also involved in trying to resuscitate the victims.

He said, ``The first little girl brought out was passed on to two of the boys outside and the second little girl was passed to me. ``She was very grey looking. I tried emergency CPR on her and was joined by firefighter Neil MacPherson.

``He was breathing into her and I was giving her chest compression. Then we could see an injury to the back of her head.

``A paramedic shouted, `You're going to have to stop. I'm afraid they're all gone.''
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:May 14, 2002
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