Saturday 20 January 2018

Oliver Kierans (57) 'aimed sawn-off shotgun at garda on same day his wife went missing', court hears

Oliver Kierans (57) of Drumbannon Bailieboro, Co. Cavan
Oliver Kierans (57) of Drumbannon Bailieboro, Co. Cavan

By Anne Sharkey

A barman has told a murder trial that the accused man aimed a sawn-off shotgun at a garda the same day his wife went missing.

Oliver Kierans (57) of Drumbannon Bailieboro in Cavan has pleaded not guilty to murdering Patricia Kierans on September 5, 2013 at the same address.

He also pleaded not guilty to unlawful possession of a 12 gauge double barrel shotgun and not guilty to possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life with the same shotgun.

Taking to the stand, barman Richard Quinn confirmed with Michael O'Higgins SC prosecuting that he knew both Oliver and Patricia.

Mr O'Higgins read from a statement made by Mr Quinn which said that after Patricia and Oliver had separated, Oliver had given up drinking alcohol.

The court heard that on Sunday the 1rst of September, the accused began drinking again and that on September 5, he was "very wobbly".

Mr Quinn confirmed that the accused asked for a pint and said "its not easy - there is going to be big news in this town tomorrow".

After finishing work at six o'clock, the jury heard that Mr Quinn left The Square bar and returned shortly afterwards to find the accused downstairs in the nightclub section of the bar.

The court heard that Mr Quinn ran downstairs, opened the door and went in one or two steps where he saw the accused in front of the couch by the light on the phone in his hands.

After leaving and returning with Garda Tommy Fay, the jury heard that the accused told him "Tommy, please leave". Mr Quinn confirmed that the accused had remained seated as he reached for a sawn off shotgun, raised it up to his head and aimed it at Garda Fay saying "please Tommy, go, please leave".

Under cross-examination by Mr Anthony Sammon SC defending, Mr Quinn agreed that Oliver Kierans was an alcoholic.

He described the accused as "very upbeat" throughout the period that he was no longer drinking.

Mr Sammon confirmed that in a statement to gardai, Mr Quinn said that on Thursday the 5 of September, Oliver Kierans was the drunkest he had ever seen him.

"Olly can hold his drink very well and that day he was very wobbly," said Mr Quinn.

Mr Quinn confirmed that the accused was "depressed" with his son, who he was very close to, moving to Australia.

"He was depressed - he wouldn't normally show his feelings. It wasn't like him."

The court heard from a local delivery man, John Gerraghty, who said he saw Oliver Kierans on the same day.

"I made my delivery as normal to the back of the pub. I was just on my way back up and nearly at top of the entrance and seen Oliver Kierans coming up. He had the head down and just walked past."

"I thought he might have waved at me or said hello but he said nothing."

The trial continues tomorrow before Ms Justice Aileen Donnelly and a jury of five women and seven men.

Online Editors

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