Man says sorry to victim's family for road rage killing
Published 21/02/2012 | 05:00
THE wife of a man who died in a road rage incident wept in court yesterday as a motorist admitted the killing and apologised for his actions.
Karl Donohoe (30) yesterday pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of English construction worker Raymond Bates in September 2010.
Father-of-three Mr Bates, from Peterlee, Co Durham, died in hospital four days after being beaten on the head with a hurley stick.
His killer was due to go on trial for murder at the Central Criminal Court in Dublin yesterday. However, when asked how he pleaded, Mr Donohoe replied: "Not guilty to murder, guilty to manslaughter."
A number of Mr Bates's family members had travelled to Ireland for the trial and his wife Brenda broke down in tears in the court after hearing the plea and the apology offered by Mr Donohoe through his counsel.
Senior counsel for Mr Donohoe, Brendan Grehan, said his client wanted to take the opportunity to apologise to the Bates family for the incident which ended Mr Bates's life and ruined his own.
"He wants to apologise for his behaviour on the day in question," said Mr Grehan. "He said it was a moment of madness on his part and he is sorry for his actions."
Mr Bates (49) had been in Ireland working on a gas pipeline when the incident happened at the junction of Sandymount Road and Tritonville Road in Dublin on September 26, 1010.
Both Mr Bates and Mr Donohoe drove away from the scene after the attack before a witness reported the assault to gardai.
The victim went to St Vincent's Hospital the following day after becoming unwell. However, his condition deteriorated and he was later transferred to Beaumont Hospital where he fell into a coma and died on September 30.
Mr Donohoe, a crane worker from Bealing Village, Tyrellstown, west Dublin, and formerly of Fisherman's Wharf, Ringsend, Dublin, was arrested and initially charged with assault causing serious harm.
However, the DPP later ordered that Mr Donohoe should be charged with murder. Isobel Kennedy, senior counsel for the State, told the court yesterday that the guilty plea to manslaughter was acceptable to the prosecution.
Mr Justice Paul Carney remanded Mr Donohoe in custody until sentencing on April 16, when a victim impact statement from the Bates family will be read in court.