Central Criminal Court
A woman, who stabbed her boyfriend to death, said that he had attacked her, and had several injuries afterwards, including a bite mark to her face.
A number of witnesses also told the Louth woman’s trial that the deceased’s trousers were down at his ankles following the New Year’s morning stabbing. One passerby said that the accused had said not to call an ambulance.
The Central Criminal Court jury heard the evidence today in the trial of the 46-year-old, who is charged with murdering the 30-year-old in her Drogheda home five years ago.
Paula Farrell of Rathmullen Park in the town, has pleaded not guilty to murdering Wayne McQuillan, but guilty to his manslaughter by stabbing him four times at that address on January 1, 2014.
Dr Marlien Mienie testified that she examined the accused in Drogheda Garda Station that New Year’s afternoon.
She told Gerard Clarke SC, prosecuting, that Ms Farrell had stated that she had been suffering from schizophrenia and depression for a number of years; she said she had last taken her medication on 30th December.
The doctor said that she had then taken a note of some physical injuries on Ms Farrell.
“She had two areas of slight bruising and swelling on the left and right side of the scalp, and what appeared to be a bite mark on her right cheek,” she said.
“She had a large vertical bruise on the right side of her neck, bruising and tenderness above her left collarbone,” she continued.
The witness also found possible areas of bruising on both upper arms and an abrasion of her left knee.
She said that they all appeared to be ‘fresh injuries’.
She was cross examined by Caroline Biggs SC, defending. The witness agreed that, on foot of the apparent bite mark to her cheek, she had administered a tetanus injection and antibiotics.
Ms Farrell’s daughter, Shauna Farrell, recalled that she was pregnant at the time of the killing. She testified that she had been alerted to the incident around an hour after midnight on New Year’s morning. She had gone to her mother’s home, where the witness’s boyfriend was attending to the deceased outside on the grass.
“My Mam was at the front door,” she told Mr Clarke. “I went to my Mam. She was not in a good state.”
Ms Farrell said that her mother went inside and got a towel for the witness’s boyfriend, who was trying to stop the bleeding.
She agreed with Ms Biggs that her mother was crying and had her hands over her face, and that she had asked the accused what she had done.
The witness agreed that she had told gardai: “She kept saying. ‘He attacked me. I didn’t mean it’.”
She had also stated that the accused was standing over the deceased, repeatedly saying: ‘I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it.’
The witness confirmed that she had been aware that her mother was taking medication for mental health issues at the time. She said that the whole family had also been aware that the accused had made allegations that she had suffered child abuse.
Paul Maguire testified that he and three friends were walking past the accused woman’s home some time after midnight that morning.
He told Mr Clarke that someone came out the door, and said that he had been stabbed and needed an ambulance.
“He came walking out, and slipped on a patch of grass,” he recalled. “I went over and shone the light on him and saw all the blood coming out.”
He said that he got a fright and called an ambulance.
He said that he had also seen the accused standing at the door.
“She just had a towel in her hands,” he said. “She was drying her hands.”
He was asked if she had said anything.
“She just said: ‘Don’t ring an ambulance’,” he replied.
He agreed with Ms Biggs that he had told gardai that, when the deceased man ran out of the house, his ‘trousers were around his ankles, his jocks were below his waist and his private parts were exposed’.
He said that this was a correct statement.
A number of other witnesses, who came on the scene later, also testified that the deceased man’s trousers were down around his ankles.
The trial continues this (Thursday) morning before Ms Justice Carmel Stewart and a jury of eight women and four men.