Rachel's family urge O'Reilly to finally tell the truth about killing
Published 12/05/2015 | 02:30
The heartbroken family of Rachel O'Reilly has said her killer husband should finally tell the truth about his crime, as that will set him free.
Speaking as Joe O'Reilly's latest attempt to have his conviction overturned was dismissed, Rose Callaly said she knows he will keep on making bids for his freedom, despite now losing three appeals.
"We know he will just keep on trying. But each time he tries, he knows he has to have something better than the last time.
"I think he should just tell the truth, that will free him . . . He might find it better for himself if he ever did," she told the Irish Independent.
Ms Callaly said she still felt Rachel was with her.
"You just feel this morning, it was such a beautiful morning, you just feel Rachel should still be on this Earth, enjoying herself. She was a young, vibrant woman when he did what he did. She was a great asset to this Earth.
"On a morning like this, and I get many of them, like when I'm hanging out the washing on the line in the garden, I feel she's before me."
Ms Callaly made the gruesome discovery of her daughter's badly beaten body in the bedroom of Rachel's home in the Naul, north Co Dublin, on October 4, 2004.
O'Reilly (42) was convicted of her murder three years later and sentenced to life in prison. The State described as an "abuse of process" O'Reilly's latest attempt to have his conviction declared a miscarriage of justice - his third bid to have his conviction overturned.
O'Reilly claimed his conviction was unsound because a portion of the book of evidence was found in the jury room on the fourth day of his 2007 trial.
However, Mr Justice George Birmingham, speaking on behalf of the three-judge Court of Appeal, yesterday said it was an "unacceptable strategy" for O'Reilly to raise the arguments he had at this stage. The killer's application was dismissed and will not proceed to a full hearing.
O'Reilly lost an appeal against his conviction in 2009. In August 2012 he failed in a subsequent attempt to have his conviction quashed after arguing his detention in the Midlands Prison was unlawful.
Ms Callaly said she and her husband Jim were "delighted" with the decision of the court - although she knows O'Reilly will continue to try and lodge appeals.
"Jim was positive (ahead of yesterday's ruling). But you just never can say never. You never breathe a sigh of relief until you get that verdict. It's laid to rest for the time being. Thank God we got justice because there are many people who have horrific events in their lives who don't get justice," Ms Callaly added.
Mr Justice Birmingham said it was clear from the way the issue of the book of evidence was approached by the trial judge at the time, that O'Reilly was fully informed and fully engaged with what was happening.
The court previously heard that the presence of the book in the jury room was brought to the attention of the Court Registrar by the jury. Trial judge, Mr Justice Barry White, told both legal teams that if it was found that any of the jurors had read any of the documents, then he would discharge the jury.
Mr Justice White asked the jury if they had read any of the book, to which the foreman replied: "No, not to my knowledge."