Sunday 25 February 2018

Young children present when pigeon enthusiast was shot dead, court told

Keith Walker
Keith Walker

Eimear Cotter

A man who tried to resuscitate a pigeon racing enthusiast allegedly shot dead by a man in drag has said there were young children around at the time and it is lucky that more people were not killed, a jury has heard.

Pigeon club member Mark Kelly was standing beside 36-year-old Keith Walker when he was allegedly shot dead by Christopher McDonald.

Mr McDonald (34) has pleaded not guilty before the Central Criminal Court to the murder of Keith Walker outside the Blanchardstown Pigeon Racing Club, Shelerin Road in Clonsilla on June 12, 2015.

It is the prosecution case that Mr McDonald, dressed as a woman, removed a sub-machine gun from his handbag, ran towards Mr Walker and discharged the weapon multiple times.

Walker was shot 18 times, twice to the head. He was fatally wounded, and died at the scene.

State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy previously gave evidence that Mr Walker would have suffered a “rapid death”.

This morning, Mr Kelly said he was standing beside Mr Walker talking to him when “a man dressed as a woman” approached them.

Mr Kelly said the man started to pull something from a bag, he moved away and the individual started firing.

He said the shooter “riddled him [Mr Walker] to bits”.

Mr Kelly said the man was wearing women’s pants, a black wig and white shoes. He was of thin build, was wearing make-up and had short hair. He was also carrying a brown handbag.

Mr Kelly said he gave Mr Walker CPR but there was blood coming out of his head and “the poor young fella was gone”.

He said he did not know how many times Mr Walker was shot but “I’d say he put every one of them into him”.

Cross examined by Bernard Condon SC, Mr Kelly said he gave his statement to gardai on the day of the shooting. He also said that young children were there and it was lucky that more people were not killed.

A second pigeon club member Brian Duffy said he was outside the club when he saw Jason O’Connor’s car drive in and Mr Walker get out of it.

Mr Duffy said he was sitting talking to another man, Paul Foster, when Mr Foster nudged him and said “that’s a hitman”.

He said he saw a man, who was coming towards them, reach into a bag, and it was like “a whole lot of fire crackers were going off”.

Mr Duffy the man dressed as a woman was wearing a long black wig, was of slim build, wearing a black top and large black glasses.

Mr Duffy said he walked behind a van, and when he got back up the shooter was gone.

Mr Duffy said he didn’t go over but he knew Mr Walker was on the ground.

The trial continues before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury of six men and six women.

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