Sunday 18 February 2018

Castlebar double murder accused tells court: ‘I’m sorry’

Alan Cawley (26) arriving at Swinford District Court
Alan Cawley (26) arriving at Swinford District Court
Jack, left, and Tom Blaine who were killed in their home in Castlebar

Greg Harkin in Swinford

A 26-year-old man accused of the murders of two pensioners said sorry when he was charged today, a court has heard.

Alan Cawley, from Four Winds, Ballina, wept throughout a brief court appearance at Swinford District Court today.

He was charged with the murders of Jack Blaine (76) and his brother Tom (69) at their home on New Antrim Street, Castlebar, on Wednesday past.

Det Sgt Gary Walsh told the court that at 1.08am today at Castlebar Garda Station Cawley made no reply in relation to the first murder charge, but replied to the second charge: “I am sorry for the all the torture I have put everyone through.”

Cawley’s solicitor Niamh Bambury asked Judge Mary Devins to have her client placed on suicide watch.

“We have serious concerns for his welfare,” said the solicitor.

Judge Devins remanded Cawley in court to appear before Harristown District Court on July 19.

She also ordered that Cawley be given “immediate psychiatric care”.

Relatives of the dead brothers sat at the back of the court throughout the hearing.

Weeping Cawley, dressed in a salmon pink hoodie, grey tracksuit bottoms and blue trainers, sat with his head bowed throughout the five minute hearing.

A large jeering crowd gathered outside the court as Cawley was ushered into an unmarked Garda car by detectives.

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