Barry Doyle found guilty of the murder of Shane Geoghegan
A 26-YEAR-old Dublin man has been found guilty of the murder of Shane Geoghegan, in Limerick, more than three years ago.
Barry Doyle, of Portland Row, Dublin, was sentenced to life in prison.
Mr Geoghegan (28), captain of his local rugby team, was shot dead near his home in a case of mistaken identity in November, 2008.
Doyle (26), a father of three had pleaded not guilty to his murder at Dooradoyle, in Limerick.
Mr Justice Garrett Sheehan yesterday summarised the defence and prosecution cases for the jury.
He said the prosecution relied upon Doyle’s confessions in Garda custody, as well as the evidence of Victoria Gunnery, the mother of one of his children.
The prosecution also relied on the evidence of April Collins, he said. Ms Collins had given evidence of Doyle’s involvement in a conspiracy to murder John McNamara, the man believed to be the real target.
Ms Gunnery testified she had discussed the murder with Doyle afterwards, asking him how he was going to live with himself.
But Mr Justice Sheehan said the defence maintained Ms Gunnery’s evidence did not support the prosecution. “The defence says you cannot rely on the evidence of April Collins,” he said, pointing out that the defence described her as a person of ‘‘bad character’’. The defence also claimed Doyle’s confession was the result of inducement in the form of threats and promises relating to Ms Gunnery.
The judge had told the jurors it may be dangerous to convict someone on a confession alone, without corroboration, but said they could do so if satisfied ‘‘beyond a reasonable doubt’’ that it was true.
“But that’s a matter for you,” Mr Justice Sheehan had added.