THE woman accused of murdering her ex-husband at a house in Macroom claimed she stabbed him two or three times and that the deceased’s brother then picked up the knife and began stabbing the victim who was found with 28 stab wounds.
The accused called her ex-husband “an evil bastard” who stabbed her on seven occasions before this incident.
This suggestion that the victim’s brother stabbed him was made by Roderick O’Hanlon senior counsel for Rita O’Driscoll of Bridge Street, Bandon, County Cork, who denies the murder of 44-year-old Timmy Foley at 12 Dan Corkery Place, Macroom, County Cork, on October 8 2018. She also denies assault causing serious harm to the deceased man’s brother, Jason Foley.
Sergeant Michael Kelleher said there was a huge amount of blood at the scene and that the accused told him that night, “Jason stabbed Timmy to protect her.”
Garda Siobhán O’Dowd said the accused, Rita O’Driscoll, was “wailing like a banshee” at the scene and there was blood pouring heavily from her left arm.
She told Garda O’Dowd her husband attacked her and stabbed her and that Jason intervened. She said the accused said, “Jason stabbed my husband to pieces. He stabbed his own brother over what he did to me. Jason stabbed him to save me.”
Jason Foley continued under cross-examination today. Mr O’Hanlon asked if he knew the O’Driscoll family were settled travellers.
He replied, “Not travellers, tinkers.”
Mr O’Hanlon said, “You don’t like them?” He replied, “There is nothing to like about them.”
The defence senior counsel said the witness referred to the accused as “one of the in-bred O’Driscolls.” Rita O’Driscoll told gardaí that her ex-husband phoned her 15 times that day and asked her to come over to Jason Foley’s house. Mr O’Hanon said when she arrived, Timmy Foley sent her out to get more vodka and mixer. The witness said he did not know if she was getting more drink for herself or Timmy.
Mr O’Hanlon SC said Timmy’s son Michael had come out as gay and that Timmy and Jason both referred to him pejoratively as “a batty boy.”
Jason Foley denied this and said Michael was not Timmy’s son and that Timmy was in prison when Rita became pregnant with him 21 years ago. Jason Foley agreed that he disapproved of homosexuals and said there were no homosexual Foleys. Mr O’Hanlon said Timmy got very irritated when Rita discussed Michael and punched her in the head. “Not that I seen… Timmy was trying to make slaps but he couldn’t,” Jason Foley said.
Mr O’Hanlon read from Jason Foley’s statement to gardaí that, “Timmy gave her a dig in the head because she had risen him to the last… She was trying to get inside his head, playing tricks to get inside his head.” The witness did not recall that.
Mr O’Hanlon said Jason Foley told gardaí that he had told Timmy, “This will have to stop. Shut her up.” And Timmy said, “I will shut her up,” and hit her a few slaps. Jason Foley said he did not recall that.
The defence senior counsel asked, “Are you aware Timmy produced a knife first?” The witness said of the deceased, “No he don’t like knives. He is too fast with his hands.” Mr O’Hanlon SC said the witness told gardaí, “Timmy shouted, ‘You dirty whore’. He shouted, ‘You will leave here in a body-bag.” The witness did not remember telling gardaí that.
Mr O’Hanlon said Jason Foley told an ambulance paramedic that he saw the defendant stabbing her brother in the chest and that, “I skull-dragged her off him and I kicked the shit out of her.” The witness replied, “When I say I kicked the shit out of someone that is my grammar. I am not actually kicking someone. It is a phrase I have.”
Mr O’Hanlon suggested that what happened then was that after the accused stabbed Timmy two or three times and dropped the knife it was he (Jason Foley) who picked up the knife. “It was you who actually stabbed Timmy after that.” The witness replied, “That is impossible.” The defence senior counsel said the accused was stabbed in the head and arm by Timmy. Jason Foley said, “Never happened. I don’t think so.” Mr O’Hanlon said Timmy had been giving out to Jason for taking his vodka and that Jason called him a bitch. Jason said, “No. Never happened. Me and my brother had no argument.” Mr O’Hanlon said Rita intervened and Timmy said to her, “F*** off you or I will knock your teeth out, you fat bitch” and she was pushed back into a chair, breaking it.
“You told Rita you were going to blame her for Timmy’s death. You said she would not be believed because she was just out of mental hospital in Cork,” Mr O’Hanlon said. Jason Foley denied that conversation.
Mr O’Hanlon said Jason and Timmy Foley were threatening and violent to Rita O’Driscoll to the extent that she feared for her life. “You and Timmy posed a serious threat to the life of Rita,” he suggested.
“No. It never happened,” Jason Foley said.
The defence senior counsel said that what Rita did was “her response to protect herself from a clear and present danger from Timmy in particular and from yourself.” Jason Foley replied again, “Never happened."
The trial continues at the Central Criminal Court sitting in Cork before Ms Justice Eileen Creedon and a jury.