Murder accused tells court he 'lost it'
A murder accused took the stand at his trial yesterday and said he had "lost it" when he hit the deceased multiple times with an axe.
Wayne Cluskey (25) and Josh Turner (24), both of Mooretown, Ratoath, Co Meath, have pleaded not guilty to the murder of 27-year-old Christopher Nevin at Tailteann Road, Navan, on November 19, 2015.
Mr Turner took the stand at the Central Criminal Court and told his defence counsel Patrick Marrinan SC that it was "complete madness" and that he was "dizzy" and "panicking" when he picked up the axe.
He added: "I thought I hit him once but I know now I hit him more than once."
Mr Marrinan said to him that he struck a "number of blows and killed Christopher Nevin".
He replied: "That's right."
He added: "I had lost it at that stage. I can't remember. It was a minute of madness."
Mr Turner said he had given Christopher Nevin a male chihuahua to breed with three female chihuahuas belonging to Mr Nevin. On the day of incident, he spoke to Mr Nevin over the phone.
He arranged to meet Mr Nevin at a mutual friend's house on Tailteann Road. He travelled to Tailteann Road with Wayne Cluskey, his friend with whom he lived at the time.
When he arrived, he knocked at the door or window and he heard Mr Nevin call out for him to wait.
Mr Turner then asked: "Have you got that money?" and then he saw the hatchet in Mr Nevin's left hand. He said Mr Nevin threatened him, saying: "I will chop your f***ing head off. I'm going to kill you."
He told Mr Marrinan: "I didn't know where this was coming from." He said he backed away and told Mr Nevin he didn't want to fight him and that they were good friends. Mr Nevin's friend Wayne Casserly then came out of the house and stood between them before Wayne Cluskey, who was carrying a long-handled axe, got into a struggle with Mr Nevin. Mr Cluskey did not swing the axe.
At some point, Mr Turner said, he received a blow to the head but he can't remember when or from whom.
Mr Turner then went inside the house on Tailteann Road to call for help but when none came he went back outside where Wayne Cluskey and Mr Nevin were wrestling on the ground. He heard Wayne say: "Stop hitting me."
The axe that Wayne Cluskey had had in his hand was now on the ground and Mr Turner picked it up. "That was when I just flipped," he said.
The prosecution and defence are expected to give their closing speeches on Monday.