MURDER victim Patricia O’Connor’s heartbroken son has said he will “never forgive” those involved in her horrific killing and the "callous" cover-up that followed.
Richard O’Connor said he was devastated, disgusted and deceived and asked how people he called family could “do such an unspeakable act.”
Patricia’s sisters and brothers said they were “sickened” by the “spiteful lies” that had been told about her by the accused.
Emotional victim impact evidence was heard at the Central Criminal Court as Kieran Greene was jailed for life today for murdering Patricia, his partner’s mother.
Greene (35) killed her at the family home they shared at the house at Mountainview Park, Rathfarnham at May 29, 2017.
He buried her body in a shallow grave in Co Wexford before digging it up days later and dismembering it, dumping the pieces in the Wicklow mountains.
The father-of-three had pleaded not guilty but was convicted by unanimous verdict of a jury following a seven week trial that ended in February.
Greene, dressed in a light grey tracksuit and wearing a blue face mask sat in the dock and did not react as Mr Justice Paul McDermott sentenced him today.
The sentence was backdated to June 2017, when he went into custody.
Greene was one of five people charged over Patricia’s death. The judge deferred the co-accused's sentences to Friday.
Patricia's daughter Louise (41) and granddaughter Stephanie O'Connor (22) and Louise’s ex-partner Keith Johnston (43) had denied impeding Greene's prosecution but were found guilty along with Greene.
Before the trial started, the fifth accused, Patricia’s husband Gus O’Connor (76) admitted falsely reporting she was missing on June 1, 2017 when he knew she was dead.
The four each face a maximum potential sentence of 10 years in prison.
In a victim impact statement on behalf of Patricia’s 10 siblings, her sister Colette Barry said they were still in disbelief at her cruel and brutal murder.
“We were all sickened to find out who was involved in her murder,” she said.
“The lies that were told, the cruel cover up of her murder, it has been shocking and utterly disgusting to sit throughout the seven-week trial to see all of their faces with no emotion of any kind.
We were deeply hurt by how Patricia’s character was so cruelly tarnished by their spiteful lies.
"The people who truly knew her, her sisters, brothers, friends, work colleagues, her neighbours will defend her kind, caring, loving nature, a jolly woman who sang out loud as she went about her day," Ms Barry said.
"They can never take those precious memories away from us. We are still trying to come to terms with the brutal and violent way her life came to a very sad end. Trisha, we love you always."
Richard O'Connor then took the stand to read his statement.
“Devastated, heartbroken, disgusted and deceived, these are only a few words to describe how I’ve felt about the murder of my mam since May 29, 2017,” he said.
“My ability to trust in people has changed. To process the amount of lies told to me by those who were my close family has led to many sleepless nights.
The constant questions I ask myself, could I have prevented this? Why didn’t I see the deceit around me? How could people I called family do such an unspeakable act?”
"The revelation of how my mam was murdered, the brutality of the act, the cold-hearted way in which she was dismembered, the disgusting way it was covered up and then to find out who was involved, will stay with me for the rest of my life," Mr O'Connor continued.
"The memories of my childhood home destroyed and the anxiety I felt entering the house again after I had found out what had happened still and probably will always affect me. No son should ever have to hear how his mam’s life ended in such a brutal and horrific way.
"Throughout the trial, my mam was portrayed in such a despicable way, trying to make out that she was a horrible person, which I, her family and friends know she was not. I have been contacted by people who used to work with my mam and they have told me how they were horrified at the lies told about her.”
"My mam was only 61, she was healthy and full of life. To have her taken away from me so cruelly when she had so much life left to live has left me totally devastated. My mam was a kind, caring and loving person, always willing to help with anything.
“I think about her all the time, her love of gardening, art, baking and nature and how she can’t continue to pass on her love and knowledge of this to my children. My children have lost their nana far too early, not due to ill health but due to the disgusting acts and lies of others.
"My mam had wanted to take a class, learn a new skill but instead she found herself drained financially, unable to focus on what she wanted or needed," Mr O'Connor said.
"I ask myself why do parents feel obliged to help their adult children even though it causes tension and distress? Why did my mam have to die due to the utter selfishness and laziness of others?”
"I think about my mam’s funeral and this upsets me beyond belief. There were some people there that shouldn’t have been, quietly moving through the funeral, saying horrible things about my mam, trying to disgrace her name even at her funeral, it’s just unbelievable. I plan on honouring my mam properly with those who loved her once all this is over.
"The support of my wife and children have got me through these last three years of turmoil. The trial was emotionally and physically draining, even though I was not allowed to sit in the court for the majority of it.
“I put all of my trust in the gardai, the DPP, the courts and ultimately the jury, who I hoped could find the truth in all of this. I have now come to the conclusion that I will never know the full truth. I thank everyone involved in getting justice for my mam, for their excellent work and sacrifice. I thank the families, army and gardai who found my mam, a horror I wouldn’t wish on anyone.
“I think of the impact on the innocent people involved: my family, my children, my other nieces and nephews. I know my children and family have been told the truth as best I can, but I wonder were my nieces and nephews given the same opportunity to know what really happened.
“I’m at a loss to understand why after my mam’s murder they tried to destroy her character. Photographs in the house were destroyed, trying to erase her memory. I now hold dear the few photographs I have of my mam," Mr O'Connor continued in his victim impact statement.
“Throughout the trial and even now no compassion, no care, no real emotion, no remorse has been shown or spoken by those involved. I never got to say goodbye to my mam, never got to see her face one last time.
That was taken from me and I will never forgive any of them for that. I hope that the sentencing given reflects the part each person had in this terrible crime, not only the actual act but the callous way in which it was covered up."