Social Services Northern Ireland Fermanagh Help Message Board Enniskillen Man Kills wife

Newspaper extract.

A 45-year-old Enniskillen man who strangled his 'abusive, controlling wife' on New Year's Day 2005, and then calmly returned to the bar to finish watching football has been jailed for four years.

William Liam John Brady, who also agreed to spend a further 18 months on probation, was told by Omagh Crown Court judge Mr Justice Weir, sitting in Belfast, "you have by your actions ended your wife's life and thereby deprived your children of their mother and yourself of the wife who, despite everything, I believe you still loved."

He added: "With the benefit of hindsight it might have been better if at an earlier stage you had decided to live apart but instead you tried to keep the family together under one roof with the dreadful consequence that I now have to deal with."

Brady, from Corban Avenue in Enniskillen was originally charged with murdering his wife Kathleen on New Year's Day 2005 but the Crown eventually accepted his guilty plea to her manslaughter.

He initially admitted her manslaughter at the beginning of his trial last June but it was only accepted by the prosecution after three days of evidence where the couples' three children testified that their mother was abusive and, at times, violent.

On Tuesday, Mr Justice Weir said that as result of their evidence, he had gained a much better insight into their married and family life, telling the court it is clear that Mrs Brady was "prone to violent outbursts of temper and of violence".

The judge told Brady he "entirely accepted" that he tried to intervene when his wife was attacking their children but that he himself "had not been violent either to your wife or the children".

He revealed that on one occasion, Brady, his two sons and a daughter had stayed at a hotel for the night while Social Services investigated their family and that although the children did not wish to go home, Brady "persuaded them to do so".

"It was quite usual for her to swear at you and blame you for things that were not your fault to which your reaction was to walk away to another room or try to calm her down, sometimes by gripping her arms," the judge told the court.

Mr Justice Weir said Mrs Brady had formed a friendship with a Welshman who had been visiting Fermanagh on a fishing trip and then continued to text him, sometimes up to 50 times a day including at midnight on New Year's Eve when her daughter tried to wish her a Happy New Year.

On the day of the killing, Brady had awoke before his wife and gone to the Roadhouse Bar, his local, to watch the day's sport, as he had previously told his wife.

Mr Justice Weir told the court that when she awoke and on finding he had gone to the bar, "flew into a violent temper saying that you should not go anywhere without her permission".

However, when her daughter pointed out to her that Brady had already told her about his plans the night before, Mrs Brady threw a glass at her head, only missing when her daughter ducked out of the way.

The girl went to the bar to tell Brady what had happened, "her mother telling her to tell you to come back before she 'wrecked the house'," described by the judge as "a threat that she had frequently made in the past".

Mr Justice Weir said Brady did go home around 4.30pm that day, giving his wife "time to calm down" but when he opened the front door, she launched what has already been described as a "tirade of abuse", threatening both her husband and her daughter.

He followed her to the kitchen and as Brady himself described to police during interviews, "I just lost it and just grabbed her and just lost it then...", wrapping his hands around her throat until she was dead.

The judge said that his "apparently callous behaviour" of returning to the bar could be seen as "reprehensible" but for a potential explanation in the report of a consultant psychiatrist.

Mr Justice Weir said he agreed it was "more likely than not" that following the killing, Brady had "entered a period of dissociation in which you could not adequately take in the magnitude of your actions".

He added, however, the result of his going back to the bar was that his teenage son was left to find his mother lying dead on the kitchen floor and it was he who had to summon the police and emergency services.

However, when the macabre discovery was made, said the judge, Brady "made no effort to deny your guilt" and as he was led from the house said to his kids, "you have peace now, no more worries".

In handing down the jail and probation terms, Mr Justice Weir said Brady was "plainly a loving father and a loyal, hard-working employee," but he added that, "your crime is such that the public interest clearly requires that you be punished by the imposition of a significant immediate custodial sentence."

Copy of Fermanagh Herald News Archive.

Link to Fermanagh Herald Newspapers.


Publication Fermanagh Herald Date September 27, 2006

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