herald

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Man accused of killing his stepson told gardai: 'It's my fault that he's dead'

David Mahon and Audrey Fitzpatrick. Photo: RollingNews.ie
David Mahon and Audrey Fitzpatrick. Photo: RollingNews.ie

A 45-year-old man accused of killing his stepson rang gardai the following day and told an officer "It was me that did it. I didn't know he was dead. I just heard it on the news".

David Mahon (45) was "very, very emotional" and "visibly shaken" when he came into Coolock Garda Station, a garda has told a jury.

Mr Mahon, of Ongar Village in Clonsilla, denies murdering 22-year-old Dean Fitzpatrick on May 26, 2013.

Mr Fitzpatrick is the brother of Amy Fitzpatrick, who went missing in Spain in 2008.

He was stabbed to death outside Mr Mahon's apartment at Burnell Square, Northern Cross, in Malahide.

Garda Patrick Brodigan told the Central Criminal Court he was working in Coolock Garda Station when he received a phone call at 9.25am from a man who identified himself as David Mahon.

Gda Brodigan said Mr Mahon told him: "It was me that did it. I didn't know he was dead. I just heard it on the news this morning".

The garda offered Mr Mahon the chance to come to the garda station, and he arrived with another man, John McCormack, shortly afterwards.

Gda Brodigan said Mr Mahon was crying and upset, and kept "talking and talking", repeating what he had said to him over the phone.

The Central Criminal Court heard Mr Mahon was formally interviewed by Detective Sergeant Eddie Carroll.

In the interview, he told gardai Mr Fitzpatrick had called up to his apartment, and the pair were arguing.

"We were always having rows, God forgive me but he's a little b*****d", Mr Mahon said, "but it's my fault he's dead."

During the interview, Mr Mahon said that Mr Fitzpatrick pulled a knife on him in the kitchen, but that he took it off him and put it in his back pocket.

Bleeding

He said his friend, Mr McCormack, took Dean out of his apartment onto the hallway, and he followed them.

Mr Mahon told gardai he pulled the knife from his pocket and he said to Dean: "What are you doing, pulling a knife on your father?"

He said Mr Fitzpatrick responded with, "what do you mean, you f**king eejit" and he walked into the knife.

The accused told gardai he thought it was only a graze and he did not see any blood. He said Mr Fitzpatrick ran down the stairs, and that was the last he saw of him.

He told gardai: "I didn't stab him, he walked into the knife", and: "It's my fault he's dead".

Mr Mahon said he remembers being in a taxi with his friend, Karl O'Toole, and throwing the knife out the window.

Earlier the court heard from Deputy State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis, who said Dean Fitzpatrick died due to torrential bleeding caused by a single stab wound to the stomach.

Dr Curtis said the stab wound was approximately 14.5cm in depth, but accepted it could have been as little as 12.5cm.

Despite emergency treatment, Dr Curtis said the injury was essentially non-survivable.

Dr Curtis said he couldn't say if the stabbing was as a result of a "run on" - which he described as when an injured person advances and comes onto a knife - or a deliberate thrust of a knife.

Cross-examined by Sean Guerin SC, Dr Curtis said there was no evidence of twisting of the knife, nor was there any lateral movement or "slicing" of the knife.

Mr Guerin said it was suggested in the prosecution's opening statement that Mr Fitzpatrick had suffered a "gutting", but Dr Curtis agreed that what "Mr Fitzpatrick suffered was not a gutting".

In his evidence, Dean's father, Christopher Fitzpatrick, said doctors tried to bring his son back to life twice, but a surgeon told him he had been unable to save him.

He confirmed that Dean had been living with him in the last week of his life.

Mr Fitzpatrick also told the court that Dean had "stuff going on about his girlfriend, his missing sister and not being able to see his son".

The trial continues.

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