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Murder accused said dad 'was a mate', court told

Victim Anthony Tims

A man who admits killing, but denies murdering, his father during an argument about drinking at home told gardai he loved and was proud of his dad, who he described as looking like American singer Kenny Rogers.

"He wasn't just my father, he was a mate," the accused man told interviewing detectives.

In garda interviews, the accused man, Mark Tims, said when he struck his father with a cup and kicked him while he lay on the ground he was "enraged".

He said he "lashed out" at his father, who was "always dragging me down".

"No matter if he was in the wrong, he was always right. He was always right," he said.

Cremated

He said he had self-harmed before because his father had "got to" him and described how his father had once struck him with a piece of weightlifting equipment.

Mr Tims (48) has pleaded guilty to manslaughter but not guilty to the murder of his father, Anthony 'Tony' Tims, at the home they shared at Rowlagh Green, Clondalkin, Dublin 22, on July 13, 2018.

The trial at the Central Criminal Court has previously heard a row erupted when Anthony Tims returned home from the pub on his 74th birthday, when the accused told him he had "cremated" his breakfast that morning and he did not want him to cook his breakfast again.

A witness has told the trial that Anthony Tims then told his son he was a "disappointment" and he wished he'd never been born before the accused man, who was "in a rage", put his father in a headlock, punched him twice in the head and kicked him when he fell to the ground.

Detective Garda Aine O'Sullivan yesterday told prosecuting counsel Michael Delaney SC she interviewed Mr Tims at Lucan Garda Station on July 15, 2018.

She agreed Mr Tims told her that on the evening his father died his dad was "narky" and annoyed that Mark was drinking in the family home.

He said his mind "closed down and then it went blank" as his father kept at him.

"If my father had a bad day, I had a bad day," he said. "When he gets narky he just gives out, gives out, gives out. He rips into me."

He remembered striking his dad with a cup. His dad fell to the ground and, he said, he stomped on him once and kicked him twice in the back.

"The stomp was hard enough. Really quick. I was reacting without thinking. If I was thinking it wouldn't have happened in the first place," he said.

Describing the same incident in a later interview, he said: "I stomped down on him, I turned away, then came back and kicked him two times and went to the fridge. Went to the door, two to three feet and kicked him again."

Weightlifting

He said he kicked his father a total of three times. Mr Tims also described how his father once got to him so much that he harmed himself. He showed gardai a mark on his wrist.

He also described his dad using a piece of weightlifting equipment to hit him when he was young. He said when his father started on him he would usually just walk away to give him time to calm down.

His dad would tell him he did not want him in the house and threaten to call gardai. He said he would try to hurt him and sometimes got to him.

On a previous occasion the accused said he hit his dad a "clatter" and felt terrible afterwards. Most of the time he could control himself but on this occasion, he said: "My head was boiling. I lashed out."