By Louise Roseingrave
A child cowered under the table with the family dog as a 46-year-old man was shot dead in his home.
James Talbot, a father of four from Lucan, Co Dublin, was shot at his front door on February 13, 2014.
Mr Talbot died at Connolly Hospital after he was shot in the doorway of his home. His wife and four children were in the house when the brutal shooting took place.
He was watching television in the sitting room with his wife when she noticed a shadow at the front door at 10.20pm.
“There was no knock. Jim got up and went to the door. I went behind him. He opened the front door then tried to push it closed again,” Linda Talbot said.
Shots rang out and her husband went down on one knee, Mrs Talbot said in her deposition.
“I didn’t see the gunman, my eyes were fixed on Jim. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing."
The man's daughter Shannon Talbot was upstairs in the bedroom with her sister when she heard "two loud bangs". She ran downstairs.
“The front door opened and I saw someone shoot my Dad,” she said.
“Mam was shouting to get the children upstairs. My little sister was hiding under the dining room table with the dog,” Shannon Talbot said.
An off-duty garda who lived nearby noticed a car he didn’t recognise enter the estate with the lights off. He heard gunshots and saw a man get into a car parked outside Mr Talbot’s house.
Emergency services were called and the injured man was rushed to Connolly Hospital where he died a short time later.
The cause of death was multiple gunshot wounds according to an autopsy conducted by Deputy State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis.
Mr Talbot had three phones and was in the process of setting up two businesses, the Dublin Coroner’s Court heard.
No suspect has been identified in relation to this shooting, Inspector Mark O’Neill told coroner Dr Myra Cullinane.
Within minutes the getaway car, a gold Toyota Avensis, was discovered on fire around 1km away on Earlsfort Road.
A firearm was found inside. It had been stolen two weeks previously.
Gardaí had not been aware of any threat to the man’s life.
The jury returned a verdict of unlawful killing by person or persons unknown.