Saturday 24 February 2018

Man (41) found guilty of strangling woman friend

Colm Deely
Colm Deely

Niamh O'Donoghue

A MAN who strangled a woman before dumping her body will be sentenced to life imprisonment today after being found guilty of her murder.

FAS worker Colm Deely (41), of School Road in Ballyvaughan, Co Clare, had denied murdering Deirdre McCarthy (43), between 11pm on March 27, 2011 and noon the following day.

But the jury of seven women and five men found the father of two guilty by unanimous verdict after two hours and 58 minutes of deliberation at the Central Criminal Court.

The court heard Ms McCarthy's body was found on Fanore Beach, Co Clare, four days after she went missing and that Deely did not take part in the search to find her.

It also heard that after her body was found, Deely had attempted to take his own life.

Ms McCarthy had known Deely for 20 years. She was also a friend of Deely's wife and was a witness at their wedding, the court heard.

On the night she went missing, Ms McCarthy had been socialising in a local pub with a group of friends that included Deely.

Deely later told gardai he went to Ms McCarthy's house where he said he was drinking a lot of vodka and the pair were lying on the bed.

"We were kissing and cuddling, I can't remember if we had sex", he said.

"I must have rolled over and was holding her by the neck ... it all happened in a flash," he said.

He said he took her from the house to the car but she was not breathing.

"I stopped the car ... I put her over the wall ... she rolled down to the sea ... Jesus, I didn't mean any of it," he said. "I meant none of it to happen ... something went out of control."

Irish Independent

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