Shocking revelations came to light in the aftermath of Thursday’s double murder in Ergates, after it emerged that the suspect accused of killing his wife and son had actually killed his niece 45 years ago when he was a teenager.
According to local media, 59-year-old Kostakis Yiangou was arrested in an abandoned building in Tseri on Thursday morning, hours after his wife and son were murdered at their home in Ergates, rural Nicosia. Police said the suspect resisted arrest while additional reports said he appeared to have had self-inflicted wounds on his body.
Reports said Yiangou flew into a rage Thursday early morning, stabbing to death his wife, 52-year-old Androula Avraksidou, and his 20-year-old son Stelios Yiangou. Neighbours who heard screams and rushed to the scene said they saw the suspect trying to murder his older son but left the scene, with the 25-year-old suffering only superficial wounds.
“I heard screams and I went there,” a neighbour told police.
“It was right at the time when he grabbed his other son. If he didn’t see me, he would have killed him. But he took off as soon as he saw me,” the eye witness said, adding “I hope no one ever sees what I saw.”
The arrest came hours after the double murder when a concerned citizen recognized the licence plates on Yiangou’s vehicle, as crime investigators back at CID Nicosia were scrambling to learn about the suspect’s background.
It turns out that Yiangou had stabbed to death his 10-year-old niece back in August 1976, when he was just 15 years old, with reports saying the teenager had stabbed the young girl 17 times. Although not convicted because he was a minor, he ended up in a mental institution for a long period of time.
The suspect remains hospitalized in police custody at Nicosia General Hospital, where he was examined by a state psychiatrist who said YIangou could stand trial. But during interrogation on Thursday, the suspect kept saying he did not remember the incident earlier in the morning.
Police said they had no record of an officer ever visiting the family, a brief visit that allegedly took place some two weeks after the sister had made calls to authorities for help
Preliminary reports said Avraksidou was stabbed multiple times in a vicious manner, with wounds in the chest and her back as she tried to run away. Her body was found outside the home, while Stelios had collapsed in the main corridor of the house in a pool of blood.
The older son reportedly told investigators that his father had been in good spirits the night before the incident, saying there was no fight in the family that evening.
But the sister of the female victim told reporters that authorities had been aware of trouble in the family, including violent outbursts in the middle of the night. According to reports, she said the suspect had tried to choke Stelios over a month ago and went on to sugget that a police officer who visited the family did not pursue the matter any further.
Police said they had no record of an officer ever visiting the family, a brief visit that allegedly took place some two weeks after the sister had made calls to authorities for help.