IN THE first case of its kind in the country, a Limerickman has appeared before court charged with buggery with a German shepherd in a house in Patrickswell, Co Limerick, four years ago.
Sean McDonnell, 58, who has now moved out of Limerick to an undisclosed location due to publicity surrounding the case, appeared visibly upset in Limerick Circuit Court as details of the case emerged.
Judge Carroll Moran heard that a number of text messages had been sent between the defendant and a woman identified only in court as XY, who died after having sexual activity with the dog belonging to Mr McDonnell on October 7, 2008, in Laurel Park, Patrickswell.
The defendant, a father of three, called the emergency services at 18.36, and when the ambulance and paramedics arrived they found the 43 year-old woman in an unusual state of dress, “with an unusual opening in the area of her pants”.
The court heard he also contacted his GP twice as he realised she was in distress, and then “collapsed as a result of contact with the dog”.
She was removed to the Mid-Western Regional Hospital and was pronounced dead at 20.20 hours by Dr Aine Moran.
Staff at the hospital alerted gardai to the incident.
A post-mortem examination was conducted by the State Pathologist, Dr Marie Cassidy, and the cause of death remains undetermined.
Swabs were taken from the deceased and no human semen was found. Further analysis by the International Society for Animal Genetics found that the samples taken from the deceased and Mr McDonnell’s dog, MacKenzie, were a match.
Mr McDonnell went voluntarily to Roxboro Road garda station on the night in question, and on April 8, 2009, his home was searched.
Three computers were seized by gardai - two belonging to XY and one belonging to Mr McDonnell - which showed extensive activity in pornographic and bestiality sites.
It is the defence’s case that there was “absolutely no element of any form of coercion” in this case, and that the woman sought out this activity.
The defendant faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment. The case has been adjourned to December 14.
- For more see Monday’s Limerick Leader