A prosecutor has told a jury that it has ample evidence to find a Kilkenny father of five guilty of murdering his nephew’s friend at a party in his seaside home.
Denis Vaughan Buckley SC was giving his closing speech in the Central Criminal Court trial of Tadhg Butler, who is charged with murdering Michael O’Dwyer on January 10, 2014. The 25-year-old died in hospital, hours after receiving a stab wound at the party in Co Waterford.
Mr Butler, 37, with an address at Seafield in Tramore, Co Waterford, has pleaded not guilty. Previously known as Thomas O’Grady, he told his trial that he accidentally stabbed him while taking a knife from his nephew to prevent him self-harming.
Mr Vaughan Buckley read out the statement given by that nephew, Anthony (Tony) O’Grady, who told gardai that Mr Butler had walked over and stabbed his friend as they sat and chatted.
“I was upset about my brother, Mark,” said Mr O’Grady in his statement. “Michael sat down beside me on the stairs. We were chatting away. I can’t remember about what. As we were talking, Thomas walked out of the kitchen, he walked up to us and at the last second, I saw him lift a butcher knife from beside his leg and stab Michael into the chest. Michael collapsed forward straight away. Thomas walked back to the sitting room and started drinking. Thomas never said a word.”
Mr Vaughan Buckley noted that the accused had not given the gardai his account of accidentally stabbing the deceased during interview.
“I submit that on the evidence, there’s more than ample evidence on which you can safely come to the verdict of guilty of murder,” he said.
Michael Bowman SC, defending, has now begun his closing speech and will continue this afternoon.