Man charged with murder after house fire kills three children in Lalor Park

A man has been charged with murder and attempted murder after a fatal house fire in Sydney’s west that claimed the lives of three of his children.

The man allegedly set fire to a Lalor Park home with his partner and her seven children inside it about 1am on Sunday morning.

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Three children, two boys — aged two and six — and a five-month-old girl, died at the scene.

The 29-year-old mum, three boys aged four, seven and 11, and a nine-year-old girl were taken to hospital at Westmead.

A “heroic” neighbour rushed to help, with their actions saving further lives from being lost, police said.

Police are seen at the site a fatal house fire at Lalor Park in Sydney's west earlier this week.Police are seen at the site a fatal house fire at Lalor Park in Sydney's west earlier this week.
Police are seen at the site a fatal house fire at Lalor Park in Sydney’s west earlier this week. Credit: Thomas Parrish/AAP

The mother has since been discharged and the children remain in stable condition.

A 28-year-old man was taken to Westmead Hospital, where he remains under police guard.

He has now been charged with three counts of murder (DV), five counts of attempted murder (DV) and destroy/damage property with intent to endanger life (DV).

Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty told reporters the man has now spoken with police, and has “recovered fairly well”.

“There is a lot to do still … there is a large amount of forensic evidence to go through and there are a lot of witnesses that have come forward, and we have interviews with the family that are ongoing,” he said.

“But what I can say is police will allege this man is solely responsible for setting fires inside the premises at Lalor Park.”

Doherty said police would allege the man lit fires in a bedroom, before lighting more throughout the rest of the home.

“We’ll allege he lit more fires, through what we allege was with the use of an accelerant that led to an explosive situation,” he said.

“There is a possibility it was petrol used, but we’ve still got to determine that as part of the forensic examination.”

Doherty said the children’s mother had been released from hospital and had returned to the scene along with friends and family.

“The woman is getting as much support as possible from family and friends as well as our counselling services,” he said.

“Physically she has recovered, but emotionally it will be a long journey ahead.”

The man’s lawyer did not apply for bail during a brief hearing at Parramatta Local Court, instead asking for an eight-week adjournment.

Magistrate Joy Bolous heard the man had no criminal record and had previously appeared before court only on tax-related matters.

She put in place an apprehended violence order to prevent him from contacting family members, attempting to find them or going within 500m of where they live.

The attempted murder charges relate to four other children — aged between four and 11 — and the man’s 29-year-old partner, all of whom survived.

A community vigil has been planned for Thursday evening to remember the victims of the fire.

The man is due to appear in Penrith Local Court on September 6.


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