Saturday 20 January 2018

Murder trial shown footage of witness swearing evidence was truthful

Nicola Donnelly

A JURY in a murder trial has been shown video footage of a prosecution witness taking an oath swearing that her statement to gardai implicating the accused is the truth.

Stacey Douglas, a step-niece of the accused Jonathan Douglas, was shown on a video recording of the reading over of her statement by gardai, in a relaxed manner, telling gardai her statement was “the truth”.

She was asked by Detective Sergeant Daly if he had a bible would she swear on it and she said she would. He administered the oath on which she swore she was telling the truth. It was day seven of the trial.

Jonathan Douglas (27), of O'Devaney Gardens, Dublin, has pleaded not guilty at the Central Criminal Court to the murder of Mr Byrne at Drumalee Avenue in Dublin on February 20, 2010.

Det Daly asked Ms Douglas whether the gun used in the murder was left at her house, to which she replied “No, it wasn't. If it was I would have handed it to you straight away.”

She is also recorded telling gardai she “doesn't want this to fall back” on her and that she “was really afraid to tell gardai” what had happened.

“I'm sorry I didn't come straight away. I really was afraid for me, Andrew and my child,” she told gardai.

Ms Douglas told gardai in her statement that Jonathan Douglas, aka Yuka, called to her house on the night of the murder and admitted shooting someone in the Cattle Market area of Drumalee estate. She said he told her someone asked him to shoot a passenger in a car and showed Ms Douglas the gun before washed himself at her kitchen sink and then left the house.

Earlier in the trial both prosecution witnesses, Ms Douglas and her boyfriend Andrew Sheridan, retracted their statements, saying they were told what to say by gardai and Ms Douglas claimed gardai threatened to take her child away from her if she “did not tell gardai what they wanted to hear”.

Counsel Gerard Clarke SC told the jury the prosecution case has now closed. Defence counsel Michael O'Higgins said the accused will not be giving evidence but the jury will hear from one defence witness tomorrow.

Mr Justice Paul Carney told the jury that, after defence closes its case in the morning the trial will reach closing speeches and the jury will be charged. It is anticipated the jury will commence their deliberations in the afternoon.

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