Husband to ask court for release on bail

THE husband of slain mother Celine Cawley will ask the High Court next Tuesday to release him on bail.

Eamonn Lillis, aged 51, of Rowan Hill, Windgate Road, Howth, was charged on Sunday with the murder of Ms Cawley, aged 46, at her home on Monday, December 15.

Dara Robinson, solicitor for Lillis, told Mr Justice Peter Charleton in the High Court yesterday that Lillis had appeared at Cloverhill District Court earlier in the day and had been remanded in custody for a fortnight.

He said Lillis had to give the Director of Public Prosecutions two clear working days’ notice of his intention to apply for bail and since today and next Monday (December 29) were the only two working days over the holiday period, his application would have to be left until Tuesday, December 30.

Judge Charleton granted Lillis leave to serve the state with short notice of his bail application and made an order for his production before the High Court sitting at Cloverhill courthouse on Tuesday next.

Lillis had made a brief appearance at Cloverhill District Court at 12.15pm, just 15 minutes after the funeral Mass of Ms Cawley began.

He sat quietly during the hearing at Cloverhill District Court, head leaning forward, clutching a paperback novel in his hands.

He had appeared at the Bridewell District Court in Dublin’s city centre on Monday — charged with the murder of his wife.

Ms Cawley was found comatose at the rear patio to the family home on Windgate Road in Howth, north Dublin on Monday of last week.

She was taken by emergency services to Beaumont Hospital where she was pronounced dead. A postmortem showed she had suffered serious injuries.

A murder investigation was set up, resulting in the arrest of Lillis last Saturday.

When his case was called yesterday he walked into the courtroom wearing the same clothes as on Monday: a light grey fleece hoodie, white T-shirt and dark blue jeans. Tired-looking, with ruffled grey hair, he showed little emotion as he sat during the hearing, which lasted less than a minute.

Lillis stood up and spoke to his solicitor briefly before he was taken back to Cloverhill jail.

Detective Sergeant Gary Kelly told the court on Monday the accused had been charged at Clontarf Garda Station last Sunday morning. He said Lillis replied “nothing to say” when he was charged with murder and cautioned.

Lillis and Ms Cawley married in 1991 and have one daughter, Georgia, 16. Gardaí and emergency crews arrived at the family home, Rowan Hill, on the picturesque Hill of Howth, at about 10am on December 15 following a 999 call.

Ms Cawley was found in a comatose state and both gardaí and ambulance staff tried to resuscitate her, before removing her to hospital.

A huge Garda investigation was then set up, involving house-to-house inquiries and detailed forensic examinations of the house and surrounding area.

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