A 35-year-old Cork woman with extensive injuries, including multiple fractures, told gardaí her husband pulled her from bed by the hair and threw her down the stairs.
But the woman later stated she fell at a clothes line and apologised to her husband for making the claims.
Three statements, two of complaints and one withdrawing the complaints, were put in evidence to a jury yesterday in the trial of Macroom man Anthony Kelleher, aged 42.
He denies a charge of assaulting his wife Siobhán Kelleher causing her serious harm at the family home in Curraheen, Raleigh North, Macroom, Co Cork, on June 12, 2014.
Under cross-examination at Cork Circuit Criminal Court by Tom Creed, defending, Ms Kelleher replied to every question: “I am not giving evidence, judge.”
On June 16, 2014, she made her first statement to Sgt Joanne O’Brien from a hospital bed at Cork University Hospital.
She said: “Last Thursday, June 12, 2014, I was at home. Anthony Kelleher, my husband, came home from work at about 5.15 pm.
“I had a glass of wine before Anthony came home to calm my nerves. He started ranting and raving and said I was staggering around. I went to bed for an hour.
“Anthony dragged me out of bed by the hair and threw me across the corridor and down the stairs. The next thing I knew I woke up in hospital.
“I am tired and drained today would like to [stop giving statement]. I do not wish my husband to visit me… I don’t care any more, he has gone too far.”
On June 25, 2014, she gave a second statement to Det Garda Thomas O’Sullivan. She said:
“I had the dinner cooked. He always expected the dinner and tea afterwards when he came home from work. I had a glass and a half of red wine to calm my nerves before he came home.
“The phonecall earlier Anthony was going on about the drink-driving case. I was caught earlier [May 2014] for drink driving. We were having pork chops that day. I put the dinner on the table. He would never say thanks. He complained that the pork chops were cooked in the oven. He wanted them fried. He is a perfectionist.
“He was sitting on the sofa on the internet and said ‘F off’. I didn’t bother arguing with him and I passed some comment under my breath and headed for the bedroom. I went to bed and covered my head with the blankets.
“He came after me and asked me what did I say. I said, ‘Nothing, I’m sorry.’ I put my hands to my face to save my head. I didn’t want bruises. I had my hair in a ponytail and he pulled me out of bed by the ponytail. There were clumps of hair coming out. He dragged me by the hair and threw me down the stairs. He kicked me on the way down twice in the ass. I got to the first landing and he kicked me the rest of the way down. I was out cold and I don’t remember anything else until I woke in hospital with a tube down my throat.
“Anthony came in to the hospital with my slippers and pyjamas. He started crying and said, ‘If you had died I would have thrown myself in the river’. I couldn’t look at him.”
In her third statement, 10 months later on April 25, 2015, to Sgt Marie Keating, she withdrew the previous two statements against her husband.
“I had a couple of glasses wine, maybe about three. I remember putting on a wash. I remember hanging out the wash. I must have slipped or tripped. Anthony must have called home and called the ambulance. I don’t remember anything. I am aware the DPP put a charge against Anthony. I don’t want Anthony charged.
“Anthony has never laid a hand on me. I don’t want him to go to court. I am sorry I did all this to him.”
Dr Louise Kelly, who treated the injured party at CUH, testified she was given an account by Mr Kelleher of what happened. He told her his wife fell down stairs, he helped her up; she walked away, and fell and struck her head against a washing machine. The surgeon said some of the injuries she saw were inconsistent with that description.
The trial continues today.
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