A detective investigating the killing of Robert Holohan believes that Wayne O’Donoghue tried to set fire to the body of the school boy some time after he dumped the remains.
“I think you went out there with the petrol to set fire to the body,” Detective Garda Sean O’Brien of the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation said to the accused during a videoed interview.
The accused replied that the Detective was entitled to his opinion but that he did not. O’Donoghue has always claimed that he tried to set fire to plastic at the scene but not to the body which had been dumped in rough ground near Inch strand.
Murder accused Wayne O’ Donoghue was today heard to deny that he held his hand over Robert Holohan’s mouth to stop him screaming. O’Donoghue, aged 21, Ballyedmond, Midleton, who admits manslaughter but denies murder was seen on video at the Central Criminal Court today being interviewed by detectives at Midleton garda station on January 17.
Detective Garda Sean O’Brien asked O’Donoghue: “Did you at any stage put your hand on Robert’s mouth to stop him screaming?” O’Donoghue replied: “Never at any stage did I do that.” “Are you sure about that?,” he was asked. “110%,” he replied.
O’Donoghue repeatedly stated in the interview that he was in a panic and never intended to kill or harm Robert.
He did not want people to get that view. Detective Garda O’Brien said: “Don’t worry what view we take. We are here to find out the truth from start to finish.” He was questioned about removing Robert’s BMX bike from outside his house and throwing it in a ditch some distance away.
Asked about this he said Robert’s bike was outside the O’Donoghue house hundreds of times before so it would not have been unusual if he had simply left it there.
Detective Garda O’Brien said: “The difference this time is that the bike is there but Robert ain’t coming back.” The detective said that half the gardaí in the country had given a week and a day to looking for Robert because they thought he had been abducted by someone.
He said this in the context of the bike being found in the ditch. Detective Sgt Brian Goulding said: “You were smart enough to take the bike.” O’Donoghue said he wouldn’t call it smart and repeated that he was panicking.