A woman who stunned a courtroom this week by admitting to three murders has two young daughters, the Mail can reveal today.
Joanna Dennehy, 31, pleaded guilty to stabbing three men to death and trying to kill two others in a rampage of violence.
The Mail has discovered she has two children she abandoned more than four years ago when she descended into a life of drink and drugs.
Family: Convicted murderer Joanna Dennehy with her two girls, whose identities have been concealed
Revelation: How the Mail reported on Dennehy this Tuesday
The girls - 14 and seven - live with their father, John Treanor, 37, and their step-mother Vicky and enjoy school and spending time with friends.
But their lives were turned upside down when their mother was arrested on suspicion of a triple murder earlier this year. Mr Treanor had to break the news to his eldest daughter after police came round to their house in Glossop, Derbyshire, to take statements about his time with the killer.
He spent 12 years in an on-off relationship with Dennehy before finally pulling the plug on their chaotic relationship in 2009.
Since then Dennehy has not tried once to visit the girls.
‘We’ve not heard a peep out of her in years,’ said Mr Treanor said. ‘My eldest daughter knew her mother had been arrested and we were all very, very shocked. She read about the murders in the papers and then she searched for it on the internet, but when she pleaded guilty this week she was devastated.
‘My youngest is only seven and I’ve chosen not to tell her about it as she is too young to understand. She doesn’t even know Jo is her mother.
‘It has been a dreadful time for us all. Just when it seemed we had got rid of their mother’s damaging influence she rears her head again.
'The girls both love school and have a circle of friends and we are trying to live a normal life. This will not help things at all.’
Lovers: Dennehy and John Teanor pose lovingly together in 2004
Mum: Dennehy with her first daughter, who is now 14 and read about her murders in the papers
Mr Treanor decided to flee to safety with his two daughters after putting up with years of drinking, drug-taking and infidelity.
The final straw came in 2009 when Dennehy, who had left the family home, turned up drunk late one evening and pulled a dagger from the inside of her knee-length leather boot. She plunged the knife, which had a decorated handle, into the living room floor and yelled, ‘I wish I could kill someone’.
Terrified, Mr Treanor broke off all contact immediately and fled to safety with his children more than 140 miles away and has not seen Dennehy since.
But he never imagined the angry outburst would become a dreadful reality and she would become one of the few female multiple killers in British criminal history. On Monday she pleaded guilty to brutally stabbing to death her landlord
New life: John Teanor, pictured, fled from Dennehy with his daughters after she came home in a drunken rage one night in 2009
Mr Lee, who died from stab wounds to the chest, was found in a ditch in Newborough, Cambridgeshire, on Easter Saturday, March 29.
Her other two victims, who were also stabbed to death, were found dumped a short distance away four days later. She will undoubtedly be handed one of the biggest prison sentences ever for a woman at the conclusion of the court case.
It is a far cry from the lively 15-year-old that Mr Treanor met in 1997 when she bounded up to him in a park as he walked his German shepherd and exclaimed: ‘I really love dogs.’
The pair immediately hit it off and, despite Mr Treanor being six years her senior, they became a couple.
They lived a nomadic lifestyle, finding work where they could and moving from house to house until Dennehy became pregnant at 16.
Periods of stability were interspersed with breaks in the relationship when Dennehy’s drinking, promiscuity and reckless behaviour drove them apart.
A final three-year period of calm saw the birth of their second daughter in 2006 but her descent into drugs, drink and casual sex led to a permanent break in 2009.
Mr Treanor, who this year married girlfriend Vicky in a ceremony in Australia, said: ‘I still can’t believe it. Her life was pretty crazy but I never expected this - it shows how far she had fallen.
‘It was inevitable that something was going to happen.’