Lillis’s daughter says she could not forgive his lies

THE daughter of Celine Cawley and Eamonn Lillis said she could forgive her father for the row that led to her mother’s death but not for the lies he told afterwards.

The teenager, who cannot be named because of her age, gave evidence via video-link. She said that in early 2009 her father told her about the row he’d had with her mother

“He just told me what had happened between him and Mum. I don’t remember word for word. It had just been the world’s worst Christmas,” she said.

“They had a fight and that was it. It was on the decking. That’s all I know,” she said. “He just said she slipped and they had a bit of a scuffle and that was it.”

Prosecuting counsel Mary Ellen Ring asked what he had said about telling the gardaí that there had been a burglary.

“He said he hid his clothes because he said he didn’t know what to do. He said he panicked,” she told the court. “He said he did it for me, but I don’t reallyappreciate that he did it.”

The teenager said he told her he was sorry for what he’d done and asked if she could forgive him.

“I said yes, but couldn’t really forgive him for the lie,” she explained.

She laughed when herfather’s barrister told her he was under strict instructions to keep her there for as short a time as possible.

Defence counsel Brendan Grehan asked her about a number of things she told gardaí in March.

She agreed that her father told her that they had fought on the deck, her mother slipped and hit her head on a brick.

She agreed that he said her mother then picked up the brick and hit her father with it, they had a scuffle, she slipped again, that she bit his finger and he panicked.

Mr Grehan asked her about not forgiving herfather for telling lies.

“I was always brought up never to lie so I didn’t really appreciate that he lied,” she explained. “But I understand why he panicked to save him.”

The trial continues.

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