Irishwoman jailed in Sydney for stabbing fiance to death

Tina Cahill and David Walsh were said to be in volatile relationship involving aggression

 

An Irishwoman has been jailed in Australia for stabbing her fiance to death. Cathrina Cahill stabbed David Walsh (29) once in the neck in the early hours of February 18th last year, at the home they shared with two other Irish nationals in the southwest Sydney suburb of Padstow.

The 27-year-old woman from Co Wexford was originally charged with murder, but pleaded guilty to manslaughter based on substantial impairment due to an abnormality of the mind.

The couple were said to be in a volatile relationship involving aggression on both sides.

At the New South Wales Supreme Court on Wednesday, Cahill, known as Tina, was sentenced to eight years in jail, with a non-parole period of five years.

Her earliest release date will be in February 2022 when she is expected to be deported to Ireland.

Justice Peter Johnson told the court: “I am satisfied the psychiatric evidence supports the existence of significant depression on the part of the offender at the time of the killing which arose from the unusual and abusive relationship with Mr Walsh.”

The fatal incident occurred when an intoxicated Mr Walsh launched an unprovoked attack on a man who had been invited into the home in Padstow by Cahill and her housemates after they met him at the pub.

Cahill, who also had been drinking, tried to stop the attack, before she took out a “large, very sharp” knife from the cutlery drawer and stabbed him.

Behaviour bond

At the time, she was on a good behaviour bond and the subject of an apprehended violence order issued to protect Mr Walsh, after she was convicted of recklessly wounding him with a glass candle holder in 2015.

Cahill gave evidence about Mr Walsh’s repeated violence, including punching strangers and biting her all over her body, and said he accused her of sleeping with other men and deleted texts from her phone.

The judge accepted her account of Mr Walsh’s controlling and demeaning conduct, observing their relationship was “doomed to fail”.

During the trial, Cahill told the court she had packed her bags many times to leave him, but Mr Walsh would tell her everything was going to be different, the court heard. “He would be making me dinner, buying me flowers, buying me a teddy bear, but after two to three weeks it would go back to the way it was,” she said.

She agreed with the judge that her evidence revealed they had a “pretty stormy relationship” and that Mr Walsh might be seen to be a “controlling and fairly unpleasant person”. 

But she said she stayed with him as she “ loved him very dearly” and he did have some good features.–AP