Wednesday 17 January 2018

Dead mother had hair caught in fingers – consistent with hair pulling

Niamh O'Donoghue

THE trial of a nurse accused of murdering her mother by hitting her on the head with a bottle has heard a number of hairs were caught in the deceased’s fingers, which would be consistent with hair pulling.

Lithuanian Greta Dudko (35) of Station Court Hall, Clonsilla in Dublin has pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to the manslaughter of Anna Butautiene (55) at that address on December 24, 2010.

The Central Criminal Court has heard the plea was not acceptable to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Ms Dudko initially told gardai she hit her mother against the wall but later said she struck her twice on the head with a bottle while she was in the bed.

Yesterday Detective Sergeant Thomas Carey of the Garda ballistics section told the court there were a number of fair hairs caught in the fingers of the deceased.

He told Ms Pauline Walley SC prosecuting that he went into a bedroom in the duplex apartment where he observed the body of a woman lying on her back with her two arms bent up.

Det Sgt Carey told the court the body was fully clothed and the pillow was heavily bloodstained.

He told Ms Walley the bedroom was searched and he found bankcards belonging to the accused.

Det Sgt Carey said there was damage done to reading and sunglasses and said he was satisfied they were physically twisted out of shape.

He also said he found a passport in the name of Anna Butautiene cut into fragments, some of which were burnt.

Det Sgt Carey said there were also a number of medications found in a cupboard in Ms Dudko’s room.

Under cross-examination he told Ms Caroline Biggs SC defending that the hairs found in the deceased’s right hand would be consistent with hair pulling.

Detective Sergeant Michael Kennedy told Ms Walley that when Ms Dudko was charged with murder she told him she destroyed her mother’s passport.

“I was saying before that my mother’s passport wasn’t valid and it was and it was destroyed by me,” said Ms Dudko.

Det Sgt Kennedy agreed with Ms Biggs under cross-examination that Ms Dudko never presented aggressively and had no convictions either in Ireland or abroad.

The accused’s GP Dr Hassan Albayyari told Ms Walley that the accused was prescribed Librium for alcohol withdrawal on December 15, 2010.

He said he formed the view that Ms Dudko was under pressure financially and physically and she was abstaining from alcohol.

On December 22, 2010 she was prescribed Lexapro which is an anti-depressant and she had had also been given Xanax in September 2010.

Under cross-examination he told Ms Biggs that in mid to late December there was a change in Ms Dudko’s demeanour and she was feeling quite anxious.

He said when he saw her on December 15, 2010 she was under severe stress in relation to her separation from her husband.

Dr Albayyari said Librium stays in the body for a long time and can sometimes cause the reverse of the required effect.

He said Lexapro takes a minimum of three weeks to work and that an extreme caution is given with Xanax for patients with a history of alcohol or drug abuse.

The trial continues.

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