Sunday 17 December 2017

Double Limerick murder trial hears victims ‘met death in a violent fashion’

Nicola Donnelly

A trial of two men accused of a double murder in Limerick has heard the victims "met death in a violent fashion."

Detective Garda Kevin Swan told prosecuting counsel Mr Brendan Grehan, SC, he entered the house of one of the victims, Desmond Kelly and found the 23-year-old "wearing a dark blue dressing gown lying on the kitchen floor in a pool of blood."



"He wasn't wearing any shoes or socks," said Det Swan. He said he went upstairs and found a female lying on a bed.



"Her legs were hanging off the bed. She was wearing black tracksuit bottoms and a white t-shirt." He said she had injuries to the throat and lower facial area.



"It was apparent both had met their deaths in a violent fashion," said Det Swan.



Sergeant Denis Waters told the court he saw Mr Kelly "with a pool of blood around him and a large amount of body fluids on the ceiling" of the kitchen.



First cousins Patrick O'Brien (31) of Glanntan, Golflinks Road, Castletroy, Limerick and Thomas Stewart (28) of The Cedar, Briarfield, Castletroy, Limerick have both pleaded not guilty to the murders of Desmond Kelly (23) and Breda Waters (28) on January 9, 2011 at O'Malley Park in Limerick.



A next-door neighbour gave evidence that he woke up at around 10am on the morning of the shootings and said he had "heard nothing."



He said Theresa Kelly, the sister of victim Desmond, came to his house and asked for an ambulance to be called.



"I rang the ambulance," Michael O'Connor told prosecuting counsel.



"I then went into the house next door and saw Desmond lying on the kitchen floor in a pool of blood. He looked dead," he said.



He said when he went upstairs to see if he could locate Desmond's girlfriend, Olivia Mullens, the mother of Desmond's five-month old daughter, he saw a shot gun cartridge on the stairs.



"I went into one of the bedrooms looking for Olivia but she wasn't there. I didn't know who the woman who was lying on the bed with an injury to her neck was," said Mr O'Connor.



He said he went into shock and left the house. He said Mr Kelly's brother Jonathan went to the house and came out a short time later "hysterical."



He said gardai and an ambulance arrived a short time later.



The jury of six men and six women were then shown excerpts of CCTV footage taken from different locations from around Limerick and O'Malley Park on the morning of the shootings. It is expected further CCTV footage is to be shown over the coming days of the trial.



The trial, which is continuing before Mr Justice George Birmingham, is expected to last four weeks.

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