Vincent Ryan killed by gunshot that went through head, court told
Paul O’Beirne and Jeffrey Morrow on trial for 2016 murder of 25-year-old in Finglas
A 2013 file image of Vincent Ryan at the Special Criminal Court. Photograph: Collins Courts.
Dublin man Vincent Ryan died as a result of the massive damage caused by a gunshot that went through his head, the trial of two men accused of his murder has heard.
Acting State Pathologist Dr Linda Mulligan told prosecution counsel Paul Burns SC at the Central Criminal Court that she examined the 25-year-old’s body a day after he was shot while sitting in his car outside his partner’s home in Finglas, Dublin.
Paul O’Beirne (36), of Colepark Drive, Ballyfermot, and Jeffrey Morrow (37), of Burnell Court, Coolock, have pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Ryan at McKee Road on February 29th, 2016.
The pathologist said she saw a bullet wound to the right side of Mr Ryan’s forehead that was 2.5cm in diameter. It had black staining around the border, which Dr Mulligan said occurs when a person is shot at close range.
There was a second wound on the left side of the forehead which Dr Mulligan said had the appearance of an exit wound. A second gunshot wound went through Mr Ryan’s right hand.
A third bullet entered the back of the right shoulder and Dr Mulligan found a wound to the base of the neck which she said had the appearance of an exit wound.
A toxicology test showed that Mr Ryan had no alcohol or drugs in his system at the time of his death.
In her conclusion, Dr Mulligan said she had identified three gunshot wounds including the “through and through” wound to the head. The wound to the head, she said, caused massive damage including brain swelling and bleeding and resulted in respiratory arrest and death.
She also found “complex skull fractures”.
The cause of death, she said, was the gunshot injury to the head while the injuries to the hand and shoulder contributed to blood loss.
Garda Glynn Miller told Mr Burns that he received a call while on duty on February 24th, 2016 from a person calling himself Jeffrey Morrow. The caller seemed “very anxious” and said he had been in a fight with “one of the Ryans and believed someone was checking out his apartment as a result of that fight,” Garda Miller said.
He said the caller did not give any reason for the fight but was “concerned of some form of reprisal as a result”.
Garda Miller sent colleague to the scene and told them that the caller said a man was standing beside a white Renault car but they did not find the man.
The witness agreed that the caller seemed “genuinely anxious and fearful that someone was watching his apartment”.
Det Garda Ursula Cummins, of the Ballistics Section of the Garda Technical Bureau, told Mr Burns she examined the scene around Mr Ryan’s white VW Golf after the shooting.
She said she found 12 discharged cartridge cases for a 9mm caliber bullet. She said she was satisfied that each one was discharged from the same gun. She also found a number of discharged bullets at the scene including inside the car. She was satisfied that each one was fired from the same barrel and they were compatible with the discharged cartridge cases found at the scene.
While she could not say what type of gun was used, she said it would have to be a firearm as described in the the Firearms Act.
The trial continues in front of Mr Justice Michael White and a jury of eight men and four women.