Sunday 19 November 2017

Dublin pharmacist who beat elderly pensioner to death with a crucifix to appeal conviction

Pacemaker Press 19/9/2011 Karen Walsh leaves Belfast Crown court in the first day of her trial yesterday charged with the murder Maire Rankin, 81, was found dead in her home on the Dublin Road in Newry on Christmas Day 2008 Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Pacemaker Press 19/9/2011 Karen Walsh leaves Belfast Crown court in the first day of her trial yesterday charged with the murder Maire Rankin, 81, was found dead in her home on the Dublin Road in Newry on Christmas Day 2008 Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
22/011/2011Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast.Photo Garrett White
Karen Walsh at Belfast Crown Court yesterday
22/011/2011 Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast. Photo Garrett White
Maire Rankin was found murdered in her home on Christmas Day 2008

Alan Erwin

A pharmacist jailed for battering her elderly neighbour to death with a crucifix is to seek to introduce fresh evidence as part of a bid to clear her name, it has emerged.

Lawyers for Karen Walsh have revealed their intention to focus on up to three phone calls either made to or from victim Maire Rankin's home on the night she was killed.

Maire Rankin was found murdered in her home on Christmas Day 2008
Maire Rankin was found murdered in her home on Christmas Day 2008

Senior judges in Belfast confirmed Walsh's appeal against being convicted of the murder will proceed next week. The 48-year-old is currently serving a minimum 20-year prison sentence for carrying out the deadly attack.

Woman jailed for crucifix murder

 

Mrs Rankin (81) was found dead at her Dublin Road home in Newry, Co Down, on Christmas Day 2008. The devout Catholic had suffered 15 broken ribs and been beaten with a crucifix given to her as a wedding gift. Evidence of a sexual assault was also discovered.

'Crucifix Killer' Karen Walsh refuses to accept guilt

Walsh, a mother-of-one, worked in Dublin but often stayed at a house she owned next door to the victim. Walsh has continued to protest her innocence.

22/011/2011
Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast.
Photo Garrett White
22/011/2011 Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast. Photo Garrett White
Karen Walsh, 45, has been found guilty of the murder of Maire Rankin, 81
22/011/2011Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast.Photo Garrett White
Karen Walsh
22/011/2011Karen Walsh at Laganside Courthouse in Belfast.Photo Garrett White
Karen Walsh and Richard Durkin leaving Belfast Crown Court yesterday

Her barrister has now told the Court of Appeal that part of the challenge will involve the examination of three phone calls.

Only Walsh can tell why Christmas visit led to brutal murder

Frank O'Donoghue QC said: "I will be adducing fresh evidence." However, with ongoing issues over securing a telecommunications expert, that ground of appeal may not initially feature.

Defence lawyers could instead begin by raising issues over DNA evidence and forensic notes.

Family of murdered pensioner find solace in precious album

Belfast Telegraph

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