THE jury in the trial of two cousins accused of murdering Des Kelly and Breda Waters in Southill last year has been told to be ‘cold and clinical’ when assessing the evidence in the trial.
Thomas Stewart, aged 29, of The Cedars, Briarfield, Castletroy and Patrick O’Brien, aged 34, of Golf Links Road in Castletroy, have pleaded not guilty to murdering Ms Waters, 28, and Mr Kelly, 23, at Mr Kelly’s home in O’ Malley Park on January 9, 2011.
Opening the trial at the Central Criminal Court in Dublin this morning, Brendan Grehan SC, said it is the prosecution case that the defendants entered the house and shot both Mr Kelly and Ms Waters shortly before 9am in what was a “common enterprise”.
He said Mr Kelly died from a shotgun wound to the head and Ms Waters died after she was shot in the neck. A sister of Mr Kelly and his young child were also in the house at the time of the shooting but escaped unharmed.
The jury of six men and six women was told the body of Mr Kelly was found near the back door in the kitchen of the house and that the body of Ms Waters was found in an upstairs bedroom.
Mr Grehan told the jurors they will hear from a number of important witnesses during the trial, which is expected to last up to a month.
He said they would also be shown a large amount of CCTV footage from locations in O’Malley Park and elsewhere in Limerick city.
Maps and photographs of the area where the double-murder happened were presented in court this morning by members of the Garda Technical Bureau who were involved in the investigation.
Mr Grehan said at the conclusion of the trial he would be asking the jury to “join the dots” and he said it is the prosecution case that the evidence would lead to “only one conclusion” - that Stewart and O’Brien are guilty to the offence.
However, he said the “onus of proof” is on the prosecution to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt and he told the jurors they must only decide the case on the evidence they hear during the trial.