Inquest into boy’s death in Garda custody adjourned indefinitely

THE inquest into the death of schoolboy Brian Rossiter, who died after being in Garda custody six years ago, has been adjourned indefinitely.

The case was listed for mention yesterday at Cork Coroner’s Court for the first time since Brian’s parents, Patrick and Siobhán, settled High Court proceedings in relation to the inquest.

They had sought an order restraining Cork City Coroner Dr Myra Cullinane from proceeding with the inquest unless she agreed to hear evidence from witnesses they wished to call, including two independent forensic scientists.

The High Court was told in July that the matter was settled and could be struck out after it was agreed that the expert witnesses would be allowed give evidence.

The Rossiter family’s solicitor Cian O’Carroll, was notified last Friday that the inquest would be mentioned in the court yesterday.

He was in court in the hope that a date would finally be set for a full hearing.

However, after some discussion in offices outside the court room, Dr Cullinane said she would not be mentioning the case and she adjourned it indefinitely.

It is understood the State, which has been legally represented at previous mentions of the inquest, was not aware of yesterday’s proceedings.

Brian Rossiter, from Clonmel in Co Tipperary, was discovered unconscious in a cell in Clonmel Garda Station on the morning of September 11, 2002, after he had been arrested the previous evening for an alleged public order offence. He died on September 13 at Cork University Hospital.

An inquiry into his death by senior counsel Hugh Hartnett found no evidence that he was assaulted, that his arrest was lawful, but that his detention was unlawful, notwithstanding the fact that his father consented to it.

The inquiry was not satisfied, however, that the teenager was assaulted while he was in custody.

The inquiry sat in private for 77 days and heard evidence from 99 witnesses between December 2005 and September 2006.

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