Deceased sought arranged fight before being stabbed to death, court told

Deceased Sought Arranged Fight Before Being Stabbed To Death, Court Told
A man who visited a Dublin suburb for a "straightener" was stabbed to death by the man he was there to fight
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Eoin Reynolds

A man who visited a Dublin suburb for a "straightener" was stabbed to death by the man he was there to fight, a barrister has told the Central Criminal Court.

Roisin Lacey SC for the Director of Public Prosecutions told the jury at the opening of the trial of Andrew Lacey that they will also hear a recording of a call made by the accused to emergency services in which he can be heard saying to a friend at the scene, "what will we do, they jumped on us, yeah, we had no weapons".


Counsel said the issue of self-defence may arise and that the prosecution case "in a nutshell" is that the accused knowingly used more force than was reasonably necessary.

Mr Lacey (35) of Riverside, Loughlinstown, Co Dublin has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Derek Reddin (31) at Loughlinstown Drive on a date unknown between October 14th and October 15th, 2019, both dates inclusive.

Ms Lacey told the jury of eight men and four women that on October 14, 2019, Mr Lacey spent a considerable part of the evening at the Lough Inn in Loughlinstown playing darts with a friend. They left and went to a takeaway next to the pub and were walking with their food towards Loughlinstown Drive at about 23.56 when they "encountered" Mr Reddin and another man.


Ms Lacey said evidence will be heard that Mr Reddin was in Loughlinstown that night for "a straightener with Andrew Lacey". She explained that he was there for a "fight" and was "not there by coincidence". She said there was a history of animosity and feuding between associates of both men.


Mr Lacey fought Mr Reddin while his friend fought a friend of Mr Reddin's, counsel said, and during the altercation Mr Reddin received a fatal stab wound that penetrated his ribs, left lung and the right ventricle of his heart.

Assistant State Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster will tell the trial that Mr Reddin died from haemorrhage and shock due to a stab wound to the heart.

The Senior Counsel for the DPP said analysis of Mr Lacey's mobile phone showed that in the immediate aftermath of the stabbing he made two calls which did not connect and then received a call from one of the numbers he had dialled. The call lasted 45 seconds and was followed by a call from Mr Lacey to emergency services at one minute and thirty seconds after midnight.

Phone call

Counsel said the accused asked for police and said he was "being chased with knives and baseball bats" before his phone went dead. She said the accused and his friend then used the friend's phone to take two photos and a short video of the scene where Mr Reddin was lying. They then used the friend's phone to call 999 and Mr Lacey said "two people are after attacking me with a knife and a bat. I'm after grabbing a knife and turning it back into him."


Counsel said the accused was then put on hold but was recorded by the emergency services talking to his friend. Reading from a transcript, counsel said the accused could be heard saying, "What will we do, they jumped on us, yeah. We had no weapons, we were eating from the chipper around the corner."

She said the jury will view CCTV footage and will hear from forensic experts about blood at the scene and DNA evidence. Blood with DNA matching Mr Reddin's was found on a knife that was retrieved at the scene, counsel said. The knife could fold into its handle and the blade measured about 8.5cm and tapered to a sharp tip.

The accused was arrested and questioned at Shankill Garda Station. Ms Lacey said he told gardaí that he had been returning from the pub when he was attacked by two men who "came out of the bushes". He said he thought one of them was Derek Reddin and that he saw Mr Reddin pulling a balaclava over his face.

He said Mr Reddin struck him twice with a baseball bat and Mr Lacey took a "work knife" from his pocket. He said Mr Reddin lunged at him with a bat and he, Mr Lacey, "had the knife open to repel Mr Reddin". Ms Lacey said the accused then described a "scuffle" in which both the accused and deceased fell to the ground and Mr Lacey said he wasn't aware that he had stabbed Mr Reddin.


In his garda interviews, Mr Lacey also told gardai that there had been trouble between his family and Derek Reddin and that Mr Reddin must have mistaken Mr Lacey for one of his cousins. He said that he "never had any dealings" with Mr Reddin but did know him to see.

Counsel said that if Mr Lacey raises self-defence as a defence to the murder charge, the prosecution must prove that he used more force than was reasonably necessary and that he did not believe at the time that he was acting in self-defence. She said the prosecution case "in a nutshell" is "that the accused did use more force than was reasonably necessary and at the time he knew himself that it was unreasonable."

The trial continues before Ms Justice Mary Ellen Ring and a jury of eight men and four women.

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