Tuesday 25 September 2018

Girl (7) describes the day a gunman shot her dad dead


John Wilson
John Wilson

A seven-year-old girl who described her father's "execution" at their home told gardai that she felt a "little bit sad and a little happy because my dad is away from the bad boys now", a murder trial has heard.

A Central Criminal Court jury was told yesterday that the girl gave officers a statement, telling them: "I just heard 'bang bang bang' - I could see my dad rolling around. I called my da."

Dublin man Keith O'Neill (39) of Lissadell Drive, Drimnagh is pleading not guilty to murdering John Wilson on September 28, 2012 at his home on Cloverhill Road, Ballyfermot Dublin 10.

Conor Devally SC prosecuting described how on the day he was shot, Mr Wilson drove up outside his home in the company of his daughter, who was seven years of age at the time, and another gentleman who was in front seat of his car.


"He nipped into the house to get something and a car drew up behind that of Mr Wilson," Mr Devally explained. "A person who seemed to be a passenger got out. He walked up the hall of the house hooded and covered with a scarf.

"Immediately six short shots were heard - this is an execution of sorts," he continued. "Mr Wilson was shot in the back - six bullets were discharged. Two of them hit him."

Mr Devally told the court that a car similar to the one described from which the gunman had emerged was set alight and that items were later discovered in it including a gun.

A statement by the vitim's daughter was read to the court.

"My dad picked me up from school," she recalled. "My dad's friend was with him. I got into the back of the car and was sitting behind my dad.

"The three of us went straight to my house - my dad went into the house. When the man went into my house there were two people - one person stayed in the jeep.

"I just heard 'bang bang bang' - I could see my dad rolling around. I called my da.

"I feel a little bit sad and a little happy because my dad is away from the bad boys now," the statement concluded.

A neighbour, Robert McHugh, later told the court that he was in his sitting room on Cloverhill Road when he heard gunshots at around 1pm on September 28.

"I remember hearing gun shots and running out and meeting his young daughter," he said.

Mr McHugh said he saw a "hooded figure" leaving John Wilson's house from his own sitting room. He could not make out the man's face.

"I made my way towards the house - his (John Wilson's) daughter was trying to get into the house. She was upset and I stopped her going in. John was lying on the ground struggling to breath," he said.


Garda Christopher O'Sullivan told Mr Devally that when they arrived on the scene "there was a crowd 15 or 20 people - there was a male receiving CPR from a number of persons," he said.

Garda O'Sullivan and his colleague also attempted CPR.

"He was not breathing - there was no pulse," he said. "Dublin Fire Brigade attended within a matter of minutes. An advanced paramedic took over.

Resuscitation was continuous for over an hour but there was no change.

"I observed a bullet on the kitchen floor. There were a number of bullet holes throughout the door leading to the kitchen."

State Pathologist Professor Marie Cassidy described two gunshot wounds to the court. Mr Wilson had been hit in the arm, but the fatal injury was the gunshot wound to the chest which injured internal organs.

The trial continues today.

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