Monday 24 October 2016

I tried to end feud with victim, claims murder accused

Eoin Reynolds

Published 05/12/2015 | 08:16

James Connors denies murdering Jason Ryan in 2012
James Connors denies murdering Jason Ryan in 2012

A Wexford man told gardai that he was attacked by his ex-girlfriend's partner and stabbed him with a knife he said the deceased had brought to the scene, a murder trial has heard.

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James Connors (29), of Rosemount, Drinagh, Co Wexford, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of 27-year-old Jason Ryan at Hollyville Heights in Wexford Town on January 25, 2012.

At the Central Criminal Court, prosecution counsel Mr Gerard Clarke SC called Detective Garda Pat O'Brien of Wexford Garda Station.

Detective Garda O'Brien agreed with counsel that on January 27, 2012 he conducted two interviews with Mr Connors at Wexford Garda Station.

Det Gda O'Brien agreed that, in the second interview, Mr Connors gave an account of the altercation with Mr Ryan. He said that he had called to Mr Ryan's home at Hollyville Heights because the two of them had argued and he wanted to tell him to forget about it.

Det Gda O'Brien agreed that Mr Connors said they had exchanged words when Mr Connors called his ex-girlfriend Samantha Hore from prison and Mr Ryan answered the phone. "I just wanted to tell him to forget about it," he told Det Gda O'Brien.

Detective Garda Dan O'Sullivan agreed that he interviewed Mr Connors later the same day.

During that interview, Connors told Det Gda O'Sullivan he called to Mr Ryan's home at Hollyville Heights on the night of January 24 and asked him to come down saying: "I want a word with you."

His statement to Gda O'Sullivan continued: "He had a bat and a knife and he said 'what the f**k do you want?'. Once I saw the weapons I walked away up the road, up the ramp."


Garda O'Sullivan asked if he had brought a knife with him and he answered no. He said the knife was tucked into the waistband of Mr Ryan's trousers.

Gda O'Sullivan agreed that Mr Connors then told him that he walked into a cul-de-sac and realised he could go no further.

The statement continued: "I turned around and as soon as I turned Jay hit me on top of the head. I pulled the knife from his waist and stabbed him with it.

"He was about to hit me again when I grabbed the knife and stabbed him. He hit me another couple of times after that and then he walked away. I thought he was fine. He wasn't bleeding or anything."

Mr Connors said he had little recollection of the events leading up to the fight. He said he had taken tablets and had been drinking.

Mr Connors said he had called his ex-girlfriend Ms Hore from prison but Mr Ryan answered the phone. He said there was an argument and added that he called Ms Hore's number again "because I knew ringing her would annoy Jay."

The trial continues on Monday.


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