'It beggars belief that our daughter's murderer Joe O'Reilly is eligible for parole in just seven years' - Rachel O'Reilly's family
The grieving parents of Rachel O'Reilly have spoken of their disgust that their former son-in-law Joe O'Reilly will be eligible for parole in just seven years.
Speaking on Newstalk's Pat Kenny Show this morning, Rose and Jim Callaly described the situation as "bizarre" and insisted their daughter's husband is a "dangerous cold-blooded psychopathic killer".
Joe O’Reilly was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2007 for murdering his wife Rachel at their family home in Naul, North County Dublin.
He bludgeoned his 30-year-old wife to death at their home in October 2004.
Earlier this year, Rachel’s parents Jim and Rose Callaly learned that their son-in-law was eligible to apply for parole due to Ireland’s lax laws.
“It’s bizarre to us in the circumstances. I can’t get my head around someone in his position being able to appeal after seven years,” Rose told Pat Kenny in an emotionally charged radio interview this morning.
“It doesn’t get any better. If anything it gets worse, and as time goes on, the less you can handle it,” she added.
Jim and Rose are adamant that Joe is a “dangerous cold blooded psychopathic killer”.
The couple opened up about the time they faced him during his trial for their daughter's murder.
“I could see his eyes dancing in his head, he got kicks out of seeing us squirm.” Jim said. “He is a mad man.”
Joe, now 41, is serving his time at Arbour Hill Prison in Dublin - he lost an appeal against his conviction in 2009.
Both Rose and Jim are confident that he will not be successful in obtaining parole, as Rose stated,
“At no time has he ever shown any remorse or admitted what he has done. It just beggars belief that he would even be considered under these circumstances.”
“If he was to show any remorse he would have to admit the truth, and that’s what he has consistently refused to do from day one, and that’s very hard to take.”
“To be honest with you I don’t think it will happen. I feel the way I did at the trial - I have this belief in me..it just couldn’t happen. “
Jim added: “In my estimation, I can’t see the authorities releasing a man like that. He can wind people around him and he could easily kill again.”
The couple opened up about the harrowing months after their daughter’s death in which they began to suspect Joe of the chilling crime.
Jim recalled that Joe was saying and doing things that did not amount to a grieving husband, and seemed to relish being in the limelight.
“A month to the day after he murdered her, he left a sick message on her phone which said,’I’m getting the kids ready for school, it’s a nice sunny morning but you are as cold as the clay you are in’”.
Jim and Rose are convinced that being a model prisoner is part of his calculated strategy.
“He’ll do his time and get out as quickly as he can,” Rose said.
A highly emotional Rose also opened up on air about the tragedy that has pervaded their family, having lost their other daughter Ann to cancer in 2010.
“She was sent as an angel, she really saw the best in everything.”
“Never until the hour she died did she ever admit she was in pain - she fought it for two-and-a-half years.”
“She had a horrendous death, a nightmare, she had great faith but she suffered.
“After she died I just couldn’t pray, but I never blamed god. Still, I just didn’t want to wake in the morning and I wanted to die.
“My girls were both taken in the prime of their life...we were lucky to have the two of them.”