Man accused of pouring boiling water on sleeping wife and attacking her with claw hammer

Detective says Noel Twomey was visibly soaked in blood when he flagged down patrol car after Cork city incident

A 63-year-old man accused of attacking his wife with boiling water and a claw hammer as she slept in their Cork city home is to go to the High Court shortly to apply for bail.

Noel Twomey is charged with two counts of assault causing harm to his wife, Jackie, at their home on January 15th last, contrary to Section 3 of the Non-Fatal Offences against the Person Act 1997.

Mr Twomey, from Carbery Grove in Knocknaheeny, made his third court appearance on the charges on Tuesday via video link from Cork Prison, where he is on remand.

Sgt Pat Lyons told Judge Mary Dorgan that the Director of Public Prosecution’s directions were not yet available and he applied for a continuing remand in custody to Cork District Court on February 20th.


Shane Collins Daly, solicitor for the accused, told the court his client was going to the High Court shortly to seek bail but that he would attend court on February 20th if he was released.

Det Garda Brian Murphy objected to Mr Twomey getting bail when he was first charged on January 15th because of the seriousness of the charges against him. He gave an outline of the alleged facts in the case in support of the force’s objection to Mr Twomey getting bail on the two assault charges.

He said Mr Twomey, who had been married to his wife for almost 40 years, was still up at around 3.30am and was watching CCTV footage as Ms Twomey returned from a night out with relatives.

Det Garda Murphy said Ms Twomey later went to bed and fell asleep and the accused then filled a pot of water, put it on the stove and armed himself with a claw hammer from a toolbox.

“When the water was boiling, Noel Twomey took the pot and the hammer and paced the flat for some time before entering the bedroom,” the detective said. “He proceeded to pour the boiling water on his wife before striking her over the head with the hammer a number of times. He expressed surprise she was able to jump up and leave the property.

“He also left the property and on Bakers Road he flagged down a patrol car. He was visibly soaked in blood and he was in possession of a bloodstained hammer in a plastic bag.”

Det Garda Murphy said gardaí proceeded to the house and scenes of crime officers cordoned off the bedroom and began an examination.

“This is very serious. She went to sleep in the safety of her own bed. Noel Twomey made the very conscious decision to boil a pot of water and retrieve a claw hammer from the toolbox,” the detective said.

“He has stated he paced the apartment 10 to 20 times considering would he carry out his actions. He entered his bedroom where his wife slept and attacked her in a cowardly fashion as she lay asleep.

“He showed no remorse and never inquired about his wife’s condition. He comes across as a very controlling individual. His actions yesterday were very disturbing and sinister.”

Det Garda Murphy told the initial hearing two weeks ago that Ms Twomey was still in hospital after she was initially taken into intensive care following the alleged attack.

In response, Judge Dorgan said: “It is difficult to hear the accused admitted the attack and said in evidence that he thought about it prior to executing an absolutely vicious attack on his sleeping wife of 40 years.”

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Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times