Wednesday 29 January 2020

A typical rural village that was touched by evil


THE scene of the crime is a nondescript small family bungalow in a cul-de-sac off a minor road and no more than a mile from the local village.

It is a typical, rural west of Ireland setting.

But there was nothing typical about the years of horrific abuse inflicted behind these walls by a bullying, sex-driven father on his terrified son.

The 52-year-old, now facing a long stretch behind bars, had been living alone here in recent times. During breaks in his trial, he returned home but never had company. He was a solitary figure on these occasions, in every sense of the word.

In the months leading up to his court hearing, the man would often make his way into the village and while away his time in one of the local pubs. Again, he was always alone. He neither invited company, nor was offered it, according to a local who spoke anonymously to the Irish Independent.

"You'd see him in the pub and he'd be there by himself. But he certainly wasn't shy either or pretending that there was anything wrong.

"Everybody here knows the story and even though no names were mentioned in the paper, we all knew that it was him who was on trial for doing that to his son," he said.

As news broke yesterday of the outcome of the nine-day trial, there was little or no reaction in the village.

"The news isn't really out yet for most people, but they'll all see it on the news on TV later. There wouldn't be much sympathy for him here -- there wouldn't be much sympathy for anyone who'd do something like that to a poor young lad.

"As far as I'm concerned, it's a good day's work. The jury reached the right decision,"he said.

Irish Independent

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