Tuesday 21 January 2020

Witness denies murdered man had slept in her garden shed

Accused man Robert Lawlor
Accused man Robert Lawlor

The prosecution has completed its evidence in the trial of a man who denies threatening to murder his former girlfriend's partner and attempting to murder the man's mother by shooting into her home.

Robert Lawlor (35), of The Rise, Laytown, Co Meath, has pleaded not guilty to the attempted murder of Fiona Mitchell at Moatview Avenue, Priorswood, Dublin, on May 26 last year.

On the final day of evidence Ms Mitchell returned to the stand for the third time and denied that Kane McCormack, who was shot dead in 2017, slept in her garden shed.

The court has previously heard that during interviews with gardai, the accused man said Mr McCormack was involved in the Hutch-Kinahan feud and was hiding out in the Mitchell garden shed before he was shot dead.

He said the person who shot at the Mitchell home "could have been the Hutches or the Kinahans".

Counsel for the accused Patrick McGrath SC yesterday put it to Ms Mitchell that: "Kane McCormack was hiding in your garden in that shed for some time." Ms Mitchell replied: "No. 100pc no."


During previous evidence Ms Mitchell said she was at home on May 26, 2018, when, about 1am, she heard her dog barking.

When she went to investigate she saw two men dressed in black in her back garden.

She ran, she said, when she saw the accused holding a gun and as she fled she heard shots being fired.

Gardai would later find her German shepherd Chopper dead on the back decking and bullet damage to doors and furniture in her house.

The accused has pleaded not guilty to possessing a firearm with intent to endanger life at Moatview Avenue, Priorswood, Dublin, on May 26 last year.

He has also not guilty to making a threat to Rachel Kirwan at Donaghmede, Dublin, on a date unknown between January 1 and 31, 2018, to kill or cause serious harm to Fiona Mitchell and her son Derek Mitchell.

He further pleaded not guilty to shooting a dog endangering its health and welfare at Moatview Avenue.

The trial continues in front of Justice Paul McDermott and a jury of seven men and five women.

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