21 Jan 2022

Jury told champion Limerick boxer was 'dragged up the road' when struck by speeding jeep

Kevin Sheehy brings national boxing title back to Limerick

The late Kevin Sheehy

A MURDER trial witness has described how he tried to grab onto his cousin - champion Limerick boxer Kevin Sheehy - before he was struck and "taken away" from him by a speeding jeep.

The Central Criminal Court also heard that Thomas Lysaght tried to pull the 20-year-old off the ground but the vehicle "spun around" and came back towards them for a second time.

"I had to let Kevin go and move away. He was dragged up the road," Mr Lysaght told the trial this Thursday.

The witness described how he then tried to divert the driver's attention away from his cousin but that the jeep "went over" the talented athlete a third time before fleeing the scene. 

Mr Lysaght was giving evidence in the trial of Logan Jackson (pictured below) who is charged with murdering Mr Sheehy in Limerick city over two years ago.

The 31-year-old, with an address at Longford Road, Coventry, England has pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to Mr Sheehy's manslaughter at Hyde Road in the city on July 1, 2019.

Mr Sheehy, a five times Irish boxing champion, died after being struck by a vehicle. His body was discovered lying on the road at about 4.40am.

Giving evidence today, Mr Lysaght told prosecution counsel Dean Kelly SC that he and Kevin are cousins but were more "like brothers". 

Mr Lysaght said Kevin was at the Munster hurling final between Limerick and Tipperary on June 30 so they made arrangements to meet in a pub at 6.30pm that day and were together for the rest of the night. 

At 2am they got a taxi to Michael Clancy's house on Hyde Road, where up to 15 people were drinking and talking in the sitting room. 

"There were two people there who spoke differently, one older and one younger. The older guy had one leg and spoke with an English accent. He was in his late twenties and had big shoulders. The other guy with him was small," he said.

When Mr Lysaght and Kevin were leaving the party they stopped to talk to the two English guys. The witness told the jury that the "bigger guy" had his top off, which Kevin noticed and said: "Look at the muscles on that guy".

When asked by Mr Kelly if this man was indeed "a fella with big muscles", Mr Lysaght said he was not.

"I can't remember the conversation after that. Kevin said that to him laughing. The smaller fella then flicked a fag at Kevin and Kevin started laughing," he recalled.

The court heard that the "bigger guy" then told "the smaller guy" to get his keys, which he did. Mr Lysaght and Kevin began walking in the opposite direction but did not get too far.

"Me and Kevin were walking up the road just laughing. I was on the footpath, Kevin was half and half. I heard tyres squeaking. I understood that to be the jeep that the smaller fella went in and had got the keys for," he explained.

Mr Lysaght said he looked around but did not see much as a jeep was "coming too fast, heading towards me and Kevin".

The witness grabbed onto Kevin as the jeep came up onto the curb. "It hit us and he was taken away from me by the jeep. I was stunned," he said.

The jeep made contact with Mr Lysaght's leg. "I rolled along the jeep and hit off the pillar of the wall," he said.

He told Mr Kelly that the jeep was going fast and did not slow down at any stage. 

When asked what happened when the jeep passed, Mr Lysaght said he was "stunned" and began looking for his cousin but could not find him. 

"When I did go over to him, he couldn't say much and I was trying to get him up but the jeep spun around and came back towards us. I had to let Kevin go and move away. I couldn't lift Kevin, he went over him a second time," he said.

The deceased, he said, was "dragged up the road" so he could not see him initially but then found him in the middle of the road. 

The witness told Mr Kelly that Kevin was "moaning in pain", could not talk and "there was blood", when he tried to lift his cousin off the road after the first collision. 

Describing the jeep going over Kevin a second time, Mr Lysaght said Kevin could not do anything as he was lying down on the ground at the time. 

"The jeep then turned back around, he came back up again. I took off my belt and tried to get him towards me to get him away from Kevin," he said.

When asked if he saw the jeep go over Kevin a third time, the witness replied: "Yes, it just kept going". 

"It [the jeep] then turned onto the main road and drove straight into town. It happened on the smaller road and he drove away onto the big road," he said, adding that he did not see the jeep again. 

Mr Lysaght described going over to Kevin saying: "There was a lot of blood and cuts and he could not talk. One girl came up and she tried to do CPR and rang an ambulance. She was doing everything she could to help him."

The witness ended his testimony by telling the jury that Kevin was unconscious at the time and his eyes were open as he lay on the ground. 

Michael Bowman SC, for Mr Jackson, will have an opportunity to cross-examine Mr Lysaght on Friday. 

Earlier, Garda Shane Ryan identified Mr Jackson as the driver of a black coloured jeep, who exited the vehicle at Hyde Road on July 1, 2019 at 4.25am and walked in the direction of a house. He said the accused has a very distinctive limp.

At 4.45am, the witness said that Mr Jackson entered the driver's seat of the jeep and his friend entered the rear passenger seat. The same car is then seen in CCTV footage driving at speed in the direction of pedestrians on Hyde Road. 

The trial continues tomorrow before Ms Justice Eileen Creedon and a jury of six men and six women. 

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