Sunday 16 June 2019

Accused admitted killing musician in ‘freak moment’

A man, who admitted killing a musician, later withdrew what he said was a 'false admission'.

However, he ultimately called gardai to confess to the crime, saying that he didn't know why he had stabbed him but that it was killing him inside.

Keith Brady (31) of Cartron Estate in the town is on trial at the Central Criminal Court, charged with murdering Martin 'Matt' Kivlehan on a date unknown between 2nd August and 3rd August 2015 in Mr Kivlehan's home.

He has pleaded not guilty to murdering the 59-year-old musician, but guilty to his manslaughter at The New Apartments on Holborn Street, Sligo.

The trial has already heard that Brady had initially denied involvement in the killing but, after his sister urged him to tell the truth, he admitted stabbing Mr Kivlehan.

Sergeant Martin McHale testified yesterday that gardai re-interviewed the accused some months later, in order to put newly-gathered mobile phone evidence to him.

He told Paul Murray SC, prosecuting, that Brady told them this time that Mr Kivlehan was alive when he and his sister left him that night.

"I would say anything just to get out of that room," he said of his admissions in interview three months earlier.

"Are you saying you made a false admission of murdering someone?" he was asked.

"Yeah," he replied. "When I was coming down from drugs, I couldn't handle the interview situation."

Sgt McHale gave Mr Brady his phone number at the end of these interviews and the accused was returned to Castlerea prison.

More than a month later, Mr Brady made contact with the sergeant, telling a prison officer that his head was wrecked.

Sgt McHale and a colleague went to the prison to take his statement.

"It's about Matt. I did it," he said. "It's about me getting this off my chest and telling the truth.

"This has been killing me inside. I haven't been able to sleep at night because of it."

He said that he and his sister, Janice Brady, had gone to Mr Kivlehan's home, having drunk cider and stolen two bottles of wine.

"They knew Mr Kivlehan and he invited them in, he said.

He said that they began listening to music and drinking with him and that 'everything was normal'.

However, he said that things got loud and the deceased became grumpy.

"Me and Matt started saying something about Janice. I can't remember, but he said something like he wouldn't touch Janice," he said.

"I was out of it. The two of us ended up standing up and I ended up stabbing him."

He said that he couldn't recall where he got the knife but that it all happened in 'about two seconds'.

"To this day, I don't know why. It was like a freak moment," he said.

"I can't believe it happened. It wasn't meant to be like that."

He said he couldn't recall much about it, but could 'still see his face to this day'.

"It was like a different world. It hadn't really sunk in," he added, explaining that his sister went into 'total shock'.

He said that Ms Brady had then got some heroin, which they smoked before leaving.

"I just want you to please pass a message to Matt's family," he asked. "I never meant for any of this to happen.

"I hope that me here today, telling the truth, might make it someway easier.

"I know that it's the first Christmas without him for them and it's going to be so hard and I'm sorry."

The trial is continuing this week at the Central Criminal Court, Courts of Criminal Justice in Dublin in front of Justice Carmel Stewart and a jury of eight men and four women.

Sligo Champion