Sister and brother shot at family event in Limerick

A young woman was shot and wounded along with her brother as they held a family gathering, and she only discovered she was pregnant when in hospital.

Sister and brother shot at family event in Limerick

The Hennessy family gathered in the front garden of their Limerick home on a summer day to celebrate the arrival of two children home from England, a court heard.

Michael Collins, for the State, said it is alleged Thomas McCarthy discharged a firearm at the front of the house, wounding Gerard and Colette Hennessy, before driving off in a silver car.

Mr McCarthy, aged 33, of 10 Slí na Milaoise, Rathkeale, has pleaded not guilty at Limerick Circuit Court to unlawful possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life at Castleview Estate, Newcastle West, and with assault causing harm to Gerard Hennessy and his sister, Colette Hennessy, on August 13, 2014.


In evidence, Colette Hennessy said she travelled to Liverpool to collect her brother Gerry’s daughters. They got to the family home around 3.15pm. Gerry and his mother were sitting in the garden. His daughters, six and seven, were greeted by their grandmother.

She then heard a shot coming from behind. On turning around, she saw the accused at their neighbour’s gate. Ms Hennessy said she had known Mr McCarthy all her life. She said he had a black band over his forehead, but she could see his face clearly. He was holding a “short, rusty thing”.

As she turned to go in the direction of the front door, she heard a second shot and that was when she got shot. She was wounded in the right hand and in the side. She was taken by ambulance to University Hospital Limerick and treated for pellet wounds to her hand and abdomen and fractured fingers. During tests she learned she was pregnant.

Bernadette Quirke, a neighbour, said she was at the kitchen sink when she heard two shots. At a front window, she saw a silver car drive past and she identified the driver as Mr McCarthy.

Eddie Carey, who lived in Castleview Estate, said he saw Gerry Hennessy fall against a wall. Mr Hennessy told him he had been shot.

In reply to Mr Nix, he denied telling gardaí Mr Hennessy told him ‘Dan’ shot him.

The trial continues.


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