Saturday 24 March 2018

Shane Geoghegan trial: John Dundon ‘panicked when he heard wrong man shot’

John Dundon
John Dundon

Natasha Reid

A 26-YEAR-OLD Limerick woman has told a murder trial that she heard John Dundon order a killing shortly before rugby player Shane Geoghegan was murdered, and that he panicked when he heard the wrong man had been shot.

April Collins was giving evidence to the Special Criminal Court in the trial of 30-year-old Limerick man John Dundon, who is charged with murdering the Garryowen player.

Dundon of Hyde Road in the city has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Geoghegan at Clonmore, Kilteragh, Dooradoyle, Limerick on November 9th, 2008.

The three-judge, non-jury court has already heard that the 28-year-old was gunned down in a case of mistaken identity as he returned home to his girlfriend that morning. He died at the scene of gunshot wounds to his head and trunk.

It’s the prosecution case that he was the unintended victim of a shooting meant for another man, who lived near the deceased.

Ms Collins told the court yesterday (Thursday) that she had been going out with Dundon’s brother, Gerard Dundon, since she was 16 and had three children with him. She said Gerard Dundon was now in prison and that they were no-longer in a relationship.

She said that she was in the home John Dundon shared with his girlfriend, children and a man called Barry Doyle shortly before Mr Geoghegan was shot. She said John Dundon, Gerard Dundon, Barry Doyle and a number of other people were also there.

“John started talking, explaining to Barry what John McNamara looked like,” she said.

“He was saying he had a gun and a car there and everything was sorted, that it just needed to be done,” she testified.

“John was telling him he was a big fella,” he continued. “He said to Barry Doyle: ‘The gun is there. You kill him’.”

 “And one of ye is driving and that’s that,” he told two other men in the room, she said.

She said that she, Gerard Dundon and her two sons stayed in a hotel that night. The court had already heard evidence that this was November 7th, 2008.

Tom O’Connell SC, prosecuting, asked if there was a reason they couldn’t stay in their own home.

“Just say yes or no,” he said.

“Yes,” she replied.

She said they went home the next morning and brought the children to school, checking into the hotel again that night, November 8th.

She said that they got a phone call from John Dundon to meet them at a car park on the Dublin road the following morning. She drove herself, Gerard Dundon and their two children to the car park around 6.30am.

“John and Barry were parked in the car park. Barry was driving. I drove up,” she said.

“John was very excited in himself, saying: ‘Johnny Mac is dead. We got him’,” she said.

She said he then rang another man ‘to slag him’.

“John started panicking, giving out to Barry that it was the wrong man, not Johnny Mac,” she continued. “He was saying: ‘You hit the wrong man’. Barry was saying: ‘It is him. The way you described him, that’s the man I killed’.”

“Barry started to get frightened because John was getting out of control, roaring and screaming. He said to Gerard they were going to go away,” she said.

Ms Collins then identified John Dundon across the courtroom.

Brendan Nix SC will cross-examine Ms Collins on behalf of Mr Dundon today (Friday), after Dundon has an opportunity to watch relevant CCTV footage.

The trial continues with Mr Justice Nicholas Kearns presiding.

Online Editors

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News