Limerick man goes on trial over fatal stabbing at laneway in city

Alison O'Riordan

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Alison O'Riordan

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Limerick man goes on trial over fatal stabbing at laneway in city

Desmond Coyle has gone on trial at the Central Criminal Court

A LIMERICK man has gone on trial at the Central Criminal Court accused of murdering a Romanian man in the city centre over a year ago.

Desmond Coyle, aged 60, with an address at Davis Street in Limerick has pleaded not guilty to murdering Calo Carpaci, 58, at Roches Row  on May 24, 2017.

In his opening address this Thursday, prosecuting counsel Anthony Sammon SC said a very significant part of the case will be based on CCTV footage capturing the movements of people around Limerick city. 

CCTV footage, the court heard, will show Mr Coyle leaving his flat at Davis Street on May 24 and going about his business. 

Mr Sammon said this footage will also show the route taken by the accused from when he leaves his home and goes to Roches Row.

“He doesn’t take the most direct route he could have taken from Davis Street to get to Roches Row and that is a matter of importance,” he said.

The court heard that CCTV footage will also show that Mr Coyle “very briefly” entered Mr Carpaci's residence at Roches Row.

The barrister said the accused’s life centered very much on alcohol and public houses at the time.

“You will come to the view that Mr Coyle was under the influence of alcohol on the occasion,” said Mr Sammon, adding that only in very rare situations can the degree of alcohol intoxication deprive a person of forming a conscious intent. 

Counsel told the jury they will receive enough evidence in this case to show that Mr Coyle’s situation at the time of the killing was not “excusatory”.

The court also heard that several witness statements will be read into evidence in the case.

There will also be evidence, Mr Sammon said, concerning Mr Coyle’s arrest and detention as well as interviews he gave gardai.

The barrister indicated to the jury that Mark Nicholas SC, defending Mr Coyle, will make a series of admissions or concessions using section 22 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984.

This provision relieves the prosecution from proving these matters of fact and it will ultimately shorten the case, he said. 

The trial continues before Mr Justice Michael White and a jury of seven men and five women. It is expected to last two weeks.