| 4.8°C Dublin

Dad gave son a lift on the night he killed a man

THE father of a murder accused told a court he gave his son a lift to the apartment where the killing had earlier taken place.

Paul Penrose was giving evidence in the trial of his son, Stephen Penrose, who denies murdering David Sharkey in Parkview, Blackcastle, Navan, Co Meath in May of last year.

His body was found in the back on his own BMW.

The 27-year-old accused, of no fixed abode, admitted manslaughter, but the DPP rejected the plea.

Mr Penrose described his son as having a "very serious" substance abuse problem. He left home about six years ago and lived rough a lot of the time.


He said his son would contact him by phone from time to time. He said he always tried "to be there for him".

On the night of the killing, he recalled his son ringing him at around 10.30pm to ask for a lift from the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre as far as Navan.

Mr Penrose described his son as being "spaced out" and clearly on something. He was "talking rubbish" and "rambling".

He dropped his son off at an apartment in Parkview, where it is alleged the murder had taken place earlier that night.

The court was shown CCTV footage of the last moments of David Sharkey's life.

The father-of-one was seen arriving at Parkview, Navan, in his BMW just before 8.30pm.

It is the prosecution's case that Mr Sharkey had been contacted on behalf of the accused, who was addicted to heroin, and was to show up with one ounce of a controlled drug. Paul Green, for the prosecution, said a row broke out, during which Penrose produced a knife and stabbed Mr Sharkey.

The CCTV footage showed the accused leaving the apartment around ten minutes after Mr Sharkey had arrived there. He was then seen reversing the BMW up to the door of the flat.


An object was seen being placed into the boot. Garda Ann-Marie O'Farrell explained to the jury that it was a heavy object, as the suspension in the car went down. The accused then got into the driver's side and the car moved out of the camera's view.

Two gardai who were on patrol in Dunsink Lane discovered the BMW in a halting site and found the body in the boot. Penrose escaped, but was arrested two days later and brought to Navan Garda Station where he confessed to the killing.

The trial continues.