A judge has asked the legal teams involved in compensation claims by the widow and children of murdered Garda Tony Golden to consider mediation in the case in order to avoid causing unnecessary trauma to the family.
Mr Justice Michael Twomey had been told that if fully contested the trial would take between three and five days and at an earlier hearing the High Court sitting was informed that all issues were still in play.
Judge Twomey said that inquiries should be made to confirm that the Minister for Expenditure and Reform would be prepared to pay the fee of a senior mediator.
Barristers Eamonn Coffey, for Garda Golden’s widow, Nicola, and the couple’s three children, and Joseph O’Sullivan, counsel for the Minister, said they would have to take further instructions on the matter which has been put in for mention at a later date.
Garda Golden, who was 36 when he was killed, was shot five times in a murder suicide after responding to a domestic violence complaint in O’Meath, Co Louth, on October 11, 2015.
Uniformed and unarmed he had accompanied Siobhan Philips (23) to the house she shared with her physically abusive partner Adrian Crevan Mackin, a known dissident republican.
Crevan Mackin shot Garda Golden in the back in the attack during which he also shot his partner, Ms Philips, four times, including one bullet to her head before turning the gun on himself and taking his own life.
Ms Philips, who survived her injuries, is living in Co Down. She had two children by Mackin and has also issued personal injury proceedings against the Commissioner of An Garda Siochana and the State alleging negligence.
In the absence of mediation the distressed widow of Garda Golden will have to undergo the further trauma of giving evidence to the High court before Judge Twomey who deals with all garda compensation cases.