Saturday 10 December 2016

Hooded gunman shot my partner, court told

Lonn Paul

Published 20/05/2011 | 05:00

The key witness in a murder trial described seeing a hooded gunman shoot her partner outside their home as she was putting their baby into the car.

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Giving evidence at the Central Criminal Court yesterday, Sharon Rattigan said she saw a stout black-haired man in dark clothes, his face covered by a hood, firing at Seamus O'Byrne in the driveway of their home at Tymon Park North in Tallaght, in March 2009.

"I saw a chap walking along wearing a tracksuit, then he just turned towards Shay and started shooting him," she told the jury.

The 29-year-old described how the man then turned the gun on her and she ran at him, grabbing him by the chest.

"I didn't know I'd been shot in the leg at the time . . . I somehow reached my hand up and got the gun out of his hand."

She and the gunman fell over a wall into the neighbour's garden as the struggle continued.

Screaming

"He was on top of me, punching me, screaming 'give me the gun'," she said.

The man ran off, and she threw the gun inside her car before going to help "Shay".

The 27-year-old had been shot four times. The court has heard a fifth bullet that went through Ms Rattigan's thigh also went into Mr O'Byrne's body.

Garrett O'Brien (34), of Clover Hill in Bray, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr O'Byrne on March 13, 2009. He has also denied a second charge of possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life on the same date.

It's the prosecution's case that Mr O'Brien was involved with a gang who had been plotting to kill Mr O'Byrne at his home.

Ms Rattigan denied that she or Mr O'Byrne had been involved in drug dealing in any way. The couple had been together for 10 years and had two young children.

Irish Independent

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