Tuesday 22 October 2019

'Are you joking me?' asked boy when told Ana's blood on his boots, trial hears

Trial: Patric and Geraldine Kriegel, parents of Ana Kriegel, at court yesterday.
Photo: Collins
Trial: Patric and Geraldine Kriegel, parents of Ana Kriegel, at court yesterday. Photo: Collins
Eimear Cotter

Eimear Cotter

A murder accused asked a garda interviewer "are you joking me?" and "are you actually being serious?" when told Ana Kriegel's blood had been found on his boots, a trial has heard.

Boy A also told gardaí that CCTV footage of a male, who they believe is Boy A, might be "one of the lads who attacked me". 

When asked by gardaí during interviews if he was in the room where Ana's body was found, Boy A said "No."

The two youths, aged 13 at the time, have pleaded not guilty before the Central Criminal Court to murdering Ana Kriegel (14) at Glenwood House, Laraghcon, Clonee Road in Lucan on May 14 last year.

Boy A has also denied a charge of aggravated sexual assault.

Yesterday, Detective Garda Marcus Roantree said he arrested Boy A on suspicion of murder at Clondalkin garda station at 8.07am on May 24, 2018 and he was detained for questioning.

Over the next two days, gardaí conducted six interviews with Boy A.

Prosecutor Gerardine Small BL led Detective Garda Tomas Doyle through the interviews with Boy A.

In interview one, Boy A told Gda Doyle he was interested in drawing.

During the second interview, Gda Doyle said he showed Boy A some CCTV clips.

Ms Small said the jury had already seen the footage.

When shown a clip of two males, Boy A told Gda Doyle "they look like the lads that beat me up".

In the third interview, Boy A was shown footage of a male walking in the park, and wearing gloves and a backpack.

Asked if he had anything to say about that individual, Boy A told Gda Doyle, "I think that might be one of the lads who attacked me".

Gda Doyle told the accused gardaí believed he was the male in this CCTV footage.

Boy A denied it was him.

He said a witness statement he previously gave to Sergeant John O'Keeffe, where he said he was attacked by two men in the park, was "the truth".

Gda Doyle said he then showed a photograph of Boy A's boots to him. Gda Doyle told him they were forensically examined and Ana's blood was found on them.

"Are you joking me?" Boy A asked.

"No," said Gda Doyle.

"Are you actually being serious?" Boy A responded.

Gda Doyle told him he wouldn't joke about something like that.

Boy A then asked if he could get some air.

His solicitor asked Boy A if he was feeling sick, and he was handed a glass of water.

Gda Doyle then told Boy A he wanted to be clear this was "serious and significant".

Boy A responded, "I am aware".

Gda Doyle also put it to Boy A that the blood on his boots put him in the room where Ana's body was found.

"Were you in this room?" Gda Doyle asked.

"No," said Boy A. 

Earlier, the court heard from John Hoade, a specialist in blood pattern and DNA analysis with Forensic Science Ireland, who said a pair of boots worn by Boy A on the day Ana disappeared had her blood on them.

The court heard Mr Hoade examined a pair of boots which were worn by Boy A on May 14.

He said there were nine separate areas of blood staining on the boots, and the DNA from the blood matched that of Ana Kriegel.

Mr Hoade said that some of the staining on the boots could be identified as blood spatter. This occurs when external force is applied to a source of liquid blood, which then falls on a surface.

The blood spatter on Boy A's boot indicated Boy A "either assaulted Ana Kriegel or was in very close proximity when she was assaulted", Mr Hoade told the jury.

The court heard Mr Hoade also examined a length of stick which was discovered in the room where Ana's body was found. The stick measured 92cm long, and 4cm x 3cm wide.

Mr Hoade said there was blood spatter and general staining on the piece of wood.

He said the blood on the stick was tested for DNA and the DNA matched Ana Kriegel's DNA.

Mr Hoade also identified a particular pattern of blood staining known as feathering on the stick which he said was "associated with a weapon that has been swung".

He said that the blood staining on the wooden stick was what he would expect if the "piece of wood was used as a weapon".

The trial continues today.

Irish Independent

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