Monday 19 March 2018

Murder accused heard voice chanting he was a paedophile, court told

Victim Mary Dargan was shot dead in her kitchen
Victim Mary Dargan was shot dead in her kitchen

Alison O'Riordan

A man accused of murder told gardaí the victim's daughter had been "chanting" that he was a paedophile for three months before he "lost it" and shot her mother dead, a trial jury has heard.

James Redmond (60), of Killinarden Estate, Tallaght, Dublin 24, is charged with murdering Mary Dargan and attempting to murder Karina Dargan at their home in Killinarden Estate on March 15, 2014.

Mr Redmond pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity to the two charges at the Central Criminal Court.

Yesterday, prosecution counsel Paul Carroll told the jury they would hear three interviews conducted with James Redmond in Tallaght Garda Station on March 16, 2014.

In the first, the accused told gardaí that Karina had been "chanting" that he was a paedophile "day and night for nearly three months" prior to the incident.

"My nerves are shattered, I'm not sleeping at all, two hours sleep every night. It just got too much. I was lying on the bed and took a handful of cartridges out of a box and went next door. I seen the two of them, I pulled the trigger twice, maybe three times," he said.

Ms Pauline Walley SC then recalled a Detective Garda who was a senior member of the investigating team.

The detective garda agreed with counsel that the evidence given by Mary Dargan’s three children had established that relations between the two families were “absolutely fine” and there had never been anything “untoward” going on.

He also also agreed that there was “no substance or truth” to allegations made by Mr Redmond about chanting or laughing or someone suggesting he was a paedophile.

The court heard that this had no basis in reality and it was all inside Mr Redmond’s head.

The court heard that he had owned his "double-barrel full length shotgun" for 20 years and he used it to shoot rabbits.

Forensic psychiatrist Dr Conor O'Neill, who is attached to the Central Mental Hospital in Dundrum, told the jury that Mr Redmond was suffering from "severe depressive episodes with psychotic symptoms" and would have been unable to refrain from his actions.

The court heard that the accused's mother had been diagnosed with schizophrenia when she was 70 years of age.

Mr Redmond had worked with Dublin County Council between the ages of 27 and 35 but had no formal employment after that. He got married at 23 and has five children.

Dr O'Neill said the accused told him he had never seen a psychiatrist and his mood became "low" in November 2013 when he started to hear voices.

Dr O'Neill said the accused told him he had a headache on the afternoon of March 15, 2014 and went to bed. He thought his head was going to burst when the chanting got louder. He then got his gun from a locked cabinet went to the Dargans' house.

The court also heard that Mr Redmond's daughter moved back into the house as she had concerns over her father's mental health in late 2013.

The trial continues.

Irish Independent

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