Son charged over mother's death to get treatment

Fri, Jun 1, 2012, 01:00

A MAN charged in relation to the death of his mother is to receive psychological and medical treatment in custody.

Niall Stapleton of Kilfane, Thomastown, Co Kilkenny, has been charged with assaulting his mother, Siobhán Stapleton (51), causing her serious harm on May 25th.

Ms Stapleton died on her way to hospital last Friday afternoon after being assaulted at her home.

She was buried in the local cemetery on Tuesday.

Her son was arrested shortly after her funeral.

Members of her family, including her husband Peter Stapleton, father of the accused, were present in Kilkenny District Court yesterday to show their support for the 31-year-old man.

They sat in the public area of the court for yesterday’s brief hearing while the accused sat separately, beside a Garda sergeant, and was not called upon to speak.

His solicitor, Mary O’Shea, said he had a “history of mental illness” and the family’s main priority was his mental health and welfare.

“His family are here in a show of full support and care for him,” she told Judge Gerard Furlong. “We’re anxious that he . . . receive the appropriate treatment.”

She said her client was reserving his position regarding bail but asked the judge to direct that Mr Stapleton receive any appropriate psychiatric assistance in custody.

Ms O’Shea applied for legal aid, saying her client was a qualified industrial design engineer.

However, she said he was not in a position to work at the moment and was receiving disability allowance.

Det Garda Bridget Goode told the court that she charged Niall Stapleton at 10.45pm on Wednesday in Thomastown Garda station.

The accused “made no reply” to the charge, she said.

Judge Furlong granted legal aid and remanded Niall Stapleton to appear again at Kilkenny District Court next Tuesday, June 5th.

He requested that the defendant receive “all appropriate psychological and medical attention and treatment on arrival at the place of detention”.