Brothers deny inserting racquet in uncle’s rectum

The Circuit Criminal Court, in Tralee, has been told that Gerald Fitzgerald sustained brain, liver, and rib injuries and had a sharp object put into his back passage causing injury to his rectum and bladder during the fight. He was left lying in an unconscious and bloodied state.

Two brothers have denied inserting a tennis racquet into their uncle’s rectum during a row at the uncle’s house, in Tralee, Co Kerry, almost four years ago.

The trio had been drinking together in the Grand Hotel, Tralee, during the day and had more drinks at Mr Fitzgerald’s house later in the evening when a fight started between them.

A broken brush handle, a damaged tennis racquet, a smashed ashtray, and a child’s scooter were among the items found at the scene and subsequently displayed by gardaí to the jury.

Robert Kelly, aged 32, of Ogham Rian, Tralee, Co Kerry, and Tommy Kelly, aged 34, of Marian Park, Tralee, have both pleaded not guilty to assaulting Mr Fitzgerald, causing him serious harm, at 38 Mitchels Rd, Tralee, on November 8, 2011.

A 50-minute video tape of Robert Kelly being interviewed by detectives in Tralee Garda station, on January 25, 2013, was shown to the jury yesterday.

He was rearrested on that date after medical evidence emerged of serious injury to Mr Fitzgerald as a result of a racquet being inserted into his rectum.

Robert Kelly said he knew nothing about the racquet. He said he would not dream of “doing anything like that” and did not see anyone doing it.

Asked by Det Gda James Hurley if he left the house knowing that his uncle had been seriously injured, he said he did not know how bad his uncle was.

“I’m very remorseful about what happened… our whole family has been turned upside down,” he said.

He said he could not remember everything that happened that night

In Garda interviews, both accused have admitted exchanging “digs” in a fight with their uncle.

Robert Kelly said another man, Terence ‘Hocker’ McCormack, who was also in the house, was jumping around the place and kept saying “go on, go on” when they were fighting.

After that, Mr McCormack said: “He’s dead, come on, come on,” and they left the house, the court was told.

Taxi driver Denis Browne, who was called to house where he found Mr Fitzgerald after the incident, was recalled yesterday because of an anomaly between a statement he made to the gardaí and his evidence regarding where Mr Fitzgerald was found lying.

He rejected a suggestion from defence counsel Garnet Orange, for Robert Kelly, that he was dovetailing his evidence to suit Tommy Kelly, a friend.

The trial continues.

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