Man who shot farm intruder 'happy' at shears case verdict
A man who shot an intruder in 2012 has welcomed a Central Criminal Court decision to acquit Martin Keenan of murder.
Mr Keenan (20) denied murdering Wesley Mooney at a halting site in Dunsink Lane.
He and his wife found Mooney and another stranger in their bedroom when they returned home on June 5, 2016.
Mr Keenan picked up part of a broken garden shears and hit Mooney with it after Mooney attacked him.
Mr Keenan was acquitted of murder on Wednesday. It was the first murder case defended under the Defence and Dwelling Act, which gives people a legal right to defend themselves and their property.
Graham Lowndes, who shot and injured thief Matthew Fahey after confronting him at his father's home in Kilsallaghan, Co Dublin, in 2012, said the law may make people think twice about burglary.
On the day of the shooting, Fahey (36) trespassed in the home of Mr Lowndes' 84-year-old father. He grabbed a shotgun and chased Fahey into the fields, during which he was shot in the arm.
Mr Lowndes (53) was charged with having a shotgun without a certificate. A more serious charge of reckless discharge of a shotgun was dropped.
Fahey, who had more than 60 convictions for theft and burglary, initiated a civil case against Mr Lowndes for injury.
Mr Lowndes said his father, Richard Lowndes, who died last year, lived in fear.
"I feel strongly that a person has a right to defend themselves and their property," he said.
"What went on for years was unfair. When you are confronted in your home, you don't have time to think about rights and laws. You want to protect yourself.
"Homeowners might feel more at ease knowing they can now protect themselves. The law is now more on their side.
"My dad would have been happy with the result of Mr Keenan's case."
Mr Lowndes said he would now like to see Ireland's bail laws enforced more strongly.
"People should be locked up if they breach bail conditions. Our current are no deterrent to some criminals," he said.
Fahey was on bail when he broke into Richard Lowndes' home.