A MAN accused of murdering his partner’s mother went to a garda station and said he had “done something terrible” before stating he had killed her with a child’s hurl during a row, cut her up body up and scattered it in the mountains.
Kieran Greene (34) told officers he first buried Patricia O’Connor (61) in a “little shallow grave” but panicked days later and dug the body up before dismembering it with a hacksaw.
Mr Greene was fidgety, very upset and dripping with sweat as he made the voluntary statement, the Central Criminal Court was told.
A jury was hearing evidence in the trials of Mr Greene, who is accused of murder, and three other people who are charged with impeding the investigation.
The grandmother’s remains were found scattered in 15 parts at nine locations over a 30km-wide area in the Dublin and Wicklow mountains between June 10 and 14, 2017.
Ms O’Connor had died from blunt force trauma to the head caused by at least three blows with a solid implement.
Mr Greene denies murdering Ms O’Connor, the mother of his then-partner Louise O’Connor, at the house they shared at Mountainview Park, Rathfarnham, on May 29, that year.
Ms O’Connor’s daughter and granddaughter Louise (41) and Stephanie O’Connor (22), as well as Louise O’Connor’s ex-partner, Keith Johnston (43) all deny acting to impede Mr Greene’s apprehension or prosecution.
Stephanie O’Connor is alleged to have disguised herself as her grandmother on the night of her alleged murder to pretend that she was still alive, while her mother Louise is accused of agreeing to this.
Keith Johnston is alleged to have assisted Mr Greene in buying implements to use in the concealment of Patricia O’Connor’s remains, and to have refurbished the bathroom at the house to destroy or conceal evidence.
Today, Garda PJ Foley said he was on duty at Rathfarnham Garda Station at 7.15pm on June 12 when he noticed a man sitting in the waiting room. He was “of a nervous disposition” and had his hands to his face, rubbing his face.
The man – Kieran Greene – said he wanted to speak to someone in charge and Gda Foley asked if there was anything he wanted to speak to him about.
“He told me the body up the mountains was that of Patricia O’Connor,” Gda Foley said.
“He told me he had a physical altercation with Patricia O’Connor whereby she hit him with a hurl and he responded by pushing her.”
He said Mr Greene motioned that with his hands and said “she fell back and he said there was blood everywhere.”
Mr Greene had said this happened outside the bathroom and he “took her up the mountains once he saw that she was unresponsive.”
In cross-examination, Gda Foley agreed with Conor Devally SC, for Mr Greene, that in his account, he was recounting what was said and some of this was “garda speak” rather than the terminology Mr Greene would have used.
Detective Sgt Lucy Myles, in charge at Rathfarnham Garda Station on the day, said she brought Mr Greene in the side entrance to the station.
“He said he did want to speak to somebody, that he had done something terrible,” she told the jury.
Asked what he did, he stated “the stuff up the mountains was me.” She asked him what stuff.
“The body parts that were scattered in the Dublin Mountains, I cut them up and I threw them all over the place up there,” he had replied. “He went on to say that he blacked out and didn’t know what happened, and he just threw them all over the mountains.”
Cautioned and asked who the person was, he said “my mother in law, but she isn’t really my mother-in-law, officially.”
He said he was “with her daughter 10 or 11 years and we have three kids together.”
Asked what her name was, he said “Patricia O’Connor” and handed Det Sgt Myles the keys to a Toyota.
“That is the car I used to bring her body away,” he said.
Det Sgt Myles had asked him why he killed her.
He told her he had been getting out of the shower when she started shouting and screaming at him and then she picked up one of the kid’s hurls that was outside the bathroom door and started hitting him with hit. “I grabbed it and hit her back,” he said.
All he remembered next was coming round and “she was lying on the floor with blood everywhere.”
He told Det Sgt Myles he then put her in the boot of the car and brought her to Wexford and buried her.
“But a few days later, I panicked and I went and dug her up,” he had said.
“I cut her up and scattered her over the mountains.”
Det Sgt Myles was aware that the previous Saturday body parts had been found in the Dublin Mountains but it was thought at the time following a post mortem that this may have been a male in his 20s.
She was aware Patricia O’Connor had been reported missing, on June 1.
Mr Greene was very fidgety and upset but was coherent. She decided to conduct a voluntary interview, at 7.45pm.
In the interview, he said “I handed myself in because I felt terrible for what I did.”
He said on the night, “we were fighting over the cat.” He said Louise O’Connor, her father Gus and the kids went out to the park and Patricia O’Connor “came back downstairs and started another fight.”
He said she stormed out the door at about 8.30 to 9pm and Louise, the children and Gus O’Connor went to their bedrooms. Patricia O’Connor then came back at about midnight. After shouting at him, he said she picked up a hurl and hit him with it on the right wrist.
“She kept saying get out, get out,” he said.
“I was trying to protect my face, I grabbed it and hit her,” he said. They then went into the bathroom and “I don’t know what happened then.”
“I woke up and saw blood everywhere,” he said. He panicked and carried her up to her bedroom, bringing her back down after about an hour.
He got her to the car, put her in the boot and put blankets over her. He said he drove out the M50, “all over the place,” past Bray to Wexford before stopping on a narrow road with a farmhouse to the right.
He pulled into an “alcovey thing” and went through a broken gate.
He said he had a shovel and “I dug a little shallow grave, buried her in there, I couldn’t dig that much because of my ribs, it was only about a foot.”
He said he went back to the car, got her, put her in and covered her with clay. He then returned to Mountainview Park.
“A few days later, I was panicking,” he said. He went back and “tried to move her” but he wasn’t able and he cut her up there.
“A few pieces, arms, legs, torso, head,” he said, adding that he put her in bags and “scattered the pieces.”
“Everything was thrown up there in the mountains,” he said. “Pieces, clothes, hacksaw.”
He said afterwards, he “tidied up and touched up the paint in the room.”
Asked how he cleaned up the blood, he said he used a mop and water.
“It’s all scattered in bags up that way as well,” he said.
Mr Greene was very upset and Det Sgt Myles stopped a number of times to let him compose himself. He was fidgeting, rubbing his hands and face.
There was “a lot of sweat,” dripping from his face.
Cross-examined, she agreed with Mr Devally that Mr Greene’s account was that he did everything “completely on his own.”
The trial continues.
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