Sunday 16 June 2019

'Unusual meeting of siblings'

A superintendent has suggested that he facilitated an unusual meeting between two prisoners, a brother and sister, on humanitarian grounds and not for a breakthrough in the investigation.

He was being cross examined by the barrister for the brother yesterday (Tuesday) on the sixth day of his murder trial at the Central Criminal Court.

The trial has heard that both Mr Brady and his sister, Janice Brady, were detained at Sligo Garda Station as part of the investigation into the killing. He made no admissions in his first interviews.

However, his sister subsequently asked then Inspector Jim Delaney if she could see her brother. Insp Delaney passed on the request to the garda in charge, Garda Joe Evans.

"Even though it was a bit unusual to me, as long as it was supervised, I didn't really see anything wrong with it," Gda Evans told Brendan Grehan SC, defending.

Garda Daniel Grimes testified that he was asked to supervise the meeting in Keith Brady's cell. He told Paul Murray SC, prosecuting, that it was at his sister's request.

He said that he was there throughout the meeting and heard 'the majority of stuff' but that they had whispered for a small period. He was cross examined by Mr Grehan, who read from the statement he made the next day.

"Janice spoke to Keith, telling him she loved him, telling him to tell the truth, that she'd be 60 years old before she'd get out," he'd written.

He told Mr Grehan that he was there to make sure they came to no harm.

"Did anyone care what they talked about?" asked the barrister. "If I heard something that was going to harm the investigation, I would have ceased the meeting," he replied.

Superintendent Jim Delaney, testified that he had facilitated the meeting on humanitarian grounds after being approached by an emotional Janice Brady.

Mr Grehan asked if his client had been consulted at all. "Both detained persons had been quite unruly," he replied.

"Maybe the fact that they could see each other and see they were both ok might calm them down."

Mr Grehan suggested that it might lead to a breakthrough in the investigation.

"It might calm them down," repeated the superintendent.

"It might lead to a breakthrough in the investigation. Isn't that exactly what happened?" asked Mr Grehan, noting that Keith Brady had gone straight from that meeting into an interview, where he'd made admissions.

"He may have had a legal consultation," suggested Supt Delaney.

"That was your motivation as chief investigating officer, without even considering whether Keith Brady wanted to see Janice or not," suggested the barrister. Supt Delaney said that he was sure that if Mr Brady had not wanted to see his sister, he would have voiced this.

"Keith Brady was presented with Janice Brady," suggested Mr Grehan, noting that his client had not responded to her when she had called out to him the previous night.

"No objection was raised at any stage. I'm sure if it had, it wouldn't have happened," he replied. "That didn't arise."

The court heard earlier that Keith Brady later told gardai that he would give his life for the deceased if he could. "I'm really not a bad person. It's a stupid, stupid thing to happen," he had said before taking a break for a cigarette in his next interview.

Sergeant Martin McHale testified that he had continued to speak while outside, saying that he would change things if he could.

He had also asked for a message be passed on to Mr Kivlehan's family and the gardai invited him to give this message on camera in the interview room.

"I just want to say to the relatives of the man deceased that I'm very sorry. I'm deeply, deeply sorry," he said. "It's not in my nature to do something like this. It was just a moment of madness," he continued, explaining that he had taken drugs.

"If I could take it back in a heartbeat, If I could give my life for his, I would, in two seconds," he added. "I'm just deeply sorry."

Sligo Champion