Sunday 23 October 2016

Man gets eight years for St Stephen's Day fatal stabbing in 'duel'

Victim David Spain
Victim David Spain

A Dublin man has been jailed for eight years for killing a man following what was described as a "duel" at Christmas two years ago.

Wayne Kennedy (34), of Rathsallagh Park, Shankill, Co Dublin, was charged with murdering David Spain (26) on December 26, 2013, at that address, and with causing serious harm to Sean Turner on the same date.

Kennedy pleaded not guilty at the Central Criminal Court to both counts.


A jury of 10 men and two women unanimously found Kennedy not guilty of the second count to intentionally or recklessly cause serious harm to Mr Turner.

They reached a majority verdict of 11 to one that he was not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter after deliberating for nearly five hours.

The court heard that on December 25, 2013, friends had arrived at Mr Spain's home at Rathsallagh Park and stayed there having a few drinks.

The trial had previously heard that at 4am or 5am there were texts between Mr Turner and Wayne Kennedy and that Kennedy was "looking for 50 pounds".

A "straightener" was arr-anged in which Mr Turner suffered potentially fatal knife wounds.

The trial heard he ran back in the direction of the deceased's house shouting that he had been stabbed. It was the State's case that Mr Spain ran after Kennedy and a fight ensued.

Counsel for the prosecution, Paddy McCarthy, said previously that the deceased threw a number of punches at Kennedy, who had a knife in his right hand and stabbed him six times.

State Pathologist Prof Marie Cassidy determined the cause of death to be stab wounds to the chest and abdomen.

"Only two of the stab sounds were deeply penetrating and were potentially fatal," she said.

The court heard that apart from the trauma to Mr Spain's major organs, he lost a considerable amount of blood.

David Spain Snr previously told the trial that he saw his son on the ground at Rathsallagh Park and that all he could remember was his eyes.

In a victim impact statement delivered to the court last month, the dead man's uncle, Eamonn Kavanagh, said it was his nephew's loyalty that led to his death.

"David is gone from our lives in the blink of an eye. He loved to laugh," he said. "He would do anything for anyone. It's this loyalty that led to his death.

"We will never forgive Wayne Kennedy for killing David. We will never forget Dave and he will live on in each of us until we take our final breaths."


Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy said mitigating factors were Kennedy's "submitting to punishment" and his "excellent" behaviour while in custody.

"When he was charged with murder, he did not seek bail - he faced up to the reality," he said.

The judge referred to def-ence counsel Remy Farrell, who said the jury's acquittal for the charge of assault causing harm proved that the jury found Kennedy's actions in the case of the assault were essentially lawful.

"Evidence received from Mr Turner revealed he was armed as well," he added. "I do not think any court can ignore the fact that a knife was brought out for anything other than a duel."

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