Friday 23 March 2018

Murder accused told gardai he believed he was meeting pro boxer for 'one on one for a fight'

Gardai at the scene of the death on Rathsallagh Park, Shankill, Co Dublin. Inset: Victim David Spain
Gardai at the scene of the death on Rathsallagh Park, Shankill, Co Dublin. Inset: Victim David Spain

Alison O’Riordan

A man accused of murdering a 26-year-old man told gardai in an interview how he thought he was just meeting a professional boxer "one on one for a fight".

Wayne Kennedy (33) with an address at Rathsallagh Park in Shankill, Co Dublin is charged with murdering David Spain on December 26 2013 at this address as well as intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to Sean Turner (24) on the same date.

Last week at the Central Criminal Court Mr Kennedy pleaded not guilty to both counts.

Today prosecution counsel Mr Paddy McCarthy SC called Detective Sergeant Joe O'Hara of Shankill Garda Station to give evidence.

The court heard the accused Mr Kennedy handed himself into Shankill Garda Station at 11am on December 26 2013 as he had heard Mr David Spain had died.

The interview taken at the time between Mr Kennedy and gardai was then read to the court by Mr McCarthy.

Gardai asked the accused man if he was involved in David Spain's death and Mr Kennedy replied: "It looks that way, I was fighting with him and he is dead."

Mr Kennedy then told gardai he had loaned Sean Turner €50 in the Silver Tassie pub a few months ago and since then Mr Turner kept saying he didn't have it.

Reading from the interview the court heard what the accused man said to gardai about the night in question: "I seen him out every weekend so I texted him for it. I was after getting into bed and got a text message off him saying he wanted to fight me."

"I then got another message saying he was down the road. He started walking towards me and then [another man] came out from the wood, he had been hiding. Then I saw another fella coming out of the lane, there was then four of them. The four of them kept coming at me. Sean Turner and David Spain started punching me in the face. Sean Turner is a professional boxer so when he hit me I don’t remember much after that," read Mr McCarthy.

The court heard how Mr Kennedy said the deceased then threw his jacket over his head.

Gardai asked the accused man did he hit David Spain?

“I hit them all as far as I know, I was just swinging because the jacket was over my head," said Mr Kennedy.

"Was your issue only with Sean Turner?" put gardai to Mr Kennedy.

"Yes I thought I was meeting him one on one for a fight," said the accused to gardai.

"Me and Turner kinda met at the middle of the field as he walking towards me, Wexy came out. As soon as Sean Turner got to me he hit me a few punches, I tried to swing back at him.

"Then I saw the Spain bloke come out of the woods and another guy came out. Spain came out to me with his jacket in his hands and when he got to me he threw it over my head. Then I felt three different blokes kicking me, loads of hard blows to my head. When I saw four of them I ran back to the house and shouted up to my ma’s window to call the guards. She didn’t answer the window was closed," read the prosecution counsel.

In cross examination Mr Remy Farrell SC put it to Det Sgt O'Hara that when Wayne Kennedy said he couldn't remember in his interview if there had been a fight with a knife that was untrue?

"Yes" replied the witness.

"He also said he didn't take anything from his house or bring a weapon to the fight which was untrue?" asked the defence counsel.

"Yes" replied Det Sgt O'Hara.

Another witness was then called by the prosecution to give evidence. Adam McMahon told the court he knew the accused for the last sixteen years.

The court heard Wayne knocked at his house at 8am on the morning of December 26 2013.

Reading from Mr McMahon's statement taken in January 2014, Mr McCarthy said: "Wayne was in a bad condition and he had a cut on his face. He said he was in trouble because he was after stabbing somebody. He said he stabbed Mr Turner. He said he stabbed another fella too who I didn’t know, who I now believe to be David Spain."

"Wayne said he went out to have a fight but saw three or four shadows in a bush and was attacked by two of them. One of them pulled a jacket over his head," continued reading Mr McCarthy.

The court then heard Mr McMahon told the accused to hand himself in and to hope no one was dead.

The trial continues.

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