The mother of a man who was murdered in Dublin last year by a teenager has said her son was a soft-natured boy who loved Christmas.
Graham McEvoy (19), of Captain's Road in Crumlin, was found guilty on Monday of the murder of Paul "Paulie" Curran (23) at Seagull House on the Crumlin Road in Dublin on July 16th, 2016.
McEvoy pleaded guilty to manslaughter but this was rejected and he underwent a week-long trial at the Central Criminal Court.
Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy yesterday (tue) sentenced McEvoy to life imprisonment.
Mr Curran's mother, Elizabeth Curran, was not present in court but wrote a statement which was read out by prosecution counsel Conor Devally SC.
She said she had suffered mental health issues as a result of her son’s death and is often afraid to leave her home in case she meets friends or family of her son’s murderer.
Ms Curran said her son was kind and well-loved and loved Christmas and giving presents.
“Christmas will never be the same again,” she added.
Describing Paul as soft-natured, she said he would console anyone who was upset and if a person cried he was so gentle he would cry with them.
The trial heard that during Garda interviews McEvoy described Mr Curran as his "best friend".
However, Ms Curran said McEvoy was not a friend of her son and that he was a bully. She has difficulty knowing that her son called out for her as he was dying and found it difficult that she was not there to take care of him when he needed her most.
She also said she could not believe her son would have carried a knife, as was stated by McEvoy who told gardaí that Mr Curran pulled a knife on him and tried to cut him.
Defence counsel Barry White SC told the court his client’s education ceased when he was 14 and that he had a drug problem. He was living a chaotic lifestyle at the time of Mr Curran’s killing and, although he had previous convictions for drugs and motor offences, he had no convictions for violent offences prior to this.
Det Sgt Dan Kelly agreed with Mr White that McEvoy appeared genuinely distressed when talking about the stabbing during interviews with gardaí.
Mr White also asked the court to note that when McEvoy told members of his family, following the delivery of the jury’s verdict on Monday: “Don’t worry, it’s only a few more years,” that this was not bravado.
He said his client’s family was “extremely distressed” and he was trying to dispel their distress.
Mr White also indicated an intention to appeal the verdict.