herald

Friday 15 December 2017

I held dying Roy and he said he loved me - dad

THE brave family of Roy Collins heard his inquest in the same courthouse where Wayne Dundon was jailed for threatening to kill Roy's step-brother nine years ago.

Yesterday a jury at Limerick Coroner's Court returned a verdict of murder, the only option open to them, to the death of Roy Collins (35), who was shot at the casino he owned in the Roxoboro Shopping Centre on April 9, 2009.

He died from a single gunshot wound to the upper body that entered on the right hand side, injuring his liver, aorta and spleen, before exiting through the left hand side of his back.

difficult

Wayne Dundon ordered Nathan Killeen and James Dillon to carry out the gun attack, and all have been convicted of the murder.

Roy's dad Steve Collins said it had given them some closure but life had been "difficult" for the family since the conviction of Dundon (36) and Killeen (24) in July.

Dundon was jailed in the same courthouse in 2005 for threatening to kill Ryan Lee.

"It's been difficult on the whole family but really difficult on my wife (Carmel)," Mr Collins said.

"She held it together right up to the trial but it did become too much for her and she hasn't been well since," Mr Collins said.

"For her, this was the final thing, and she couldn't come to this. This was so hard for her to get over, another hurdle."

At the inquest, Mr Collins' deposition detailed his last conversation with his son and how he saw him crouched on the ground of his casino with a bullet wound to his back.

Less than an hour before that, father and son had chatted happily and Mr Collins described his son as being in "great form".

He had talked about a planned trip to the MFI store in Dublin where he and fiancee Melissa Crawford were going to buy a kitchen.

The next time he saw his son was crouching on the floor of his casino. "He told me he loved me and he loved his mom," Mr Collins said.

He was pronounced dead at the Midlands Regional Hospital after 15 minutes of compressions as staff fought desperately to save his life.

Now Steve Collins is looking to the future and trying to rebuild his life, hopefully, one day back in Limerick.

threat

The family left the State in March 2012 as part of a relocation programme because they were living under the constant threat of attack by the McCarthy-Dundon gang.

"That's up to the gardai (if they return) and up to the security people and I'm looking forward to some day when they can tell me that we can come back," he said.

"I'd love to come back to Limerick but again, it's something I have to be guided on by the people who know best.

"I'm just going by Limerick people and what they're saying and they feel comfortable and the city is starting to get the reputation it deserves and not the one it was tarnished with and I'm delighted about that," he added.

hnews@herald.ie

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