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Jury hears behaviour of accused hours after Castlerea murder

Oct 18, 2022 09:10 By Shannonside News
Jury hears behaviour of accused hours after Castlerea murder Jury hears behaviour of accused hours after Castlerea murder
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The trial will continue before Mr Justice Paul McDermott today.

Stephen Silver's behaviour in custody following the 2020 shooting of a detective garda in Roscommon was the subject of Garda evidence in court yesterday.

The motorcycle mechanic in his 40s is charged with the murder of Colm Horkan in Castlerea on the 17th of June 2020, but has entered a plea of guilty to manslaughter due to diminished responsibility.

Garda David Walsh began his duties as the member in charge of Castlerea Garda station on the morning of the 18th of June, just hours after his colleague Colm Horkan was shot dead in the town.

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Over the course of the morning, the accused was advised to nominate a solicitor, with the Garda member in charge describing a difficulty in the selection process.

Later that morning, Stephen Silver was taken to the doctor's room in Castlerea Garda Station where his fingerprints and a DNA sample were taken.

The jury heard that from there, Mr Silver was interviewed by two detectives for a number of hours, punctuated with consultations with his solicitor. During the evening of the 18th, Garda Walsh stated that on taking the accused to the toilet between interviews, the defendant reportedly slammed the toilet seat down three times, breaking it. He'd also damaged a set of tracksuit bottoms and a tee-shirt provided by Gardaí earlier that day.

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Garda David Walsh returned to duty the next morning where he described Silver as more aggressive than the previous day, with the defendant reported to have attempted to grab the Garda by the neck through the hatch of the cell door, with a short time later it was also said to the jury that Mr. Silver spat at a Garda sergeant through the hatch.

When offered a shower, the garda witness said Mr Silver twice exposed his genitals to Gardaí, telling one member 'He'll be sorry'. During her cross-examination of Garda Walsh, Roisin Lacey SC asked him to confirm the changes in Stephen Silver's behaviour from calm to aggressive.

Particular focus from the defence was put on the cancellation of a doctor's visit by Garda Walsh, following a statement by Silver's solicitor during one of the interviews that another medical assessment was needed. According to the Garda witness, the visit was cancelled as he had not made the request himself and was unsure of who had made contact with the doctor.

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