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Man found guilty of murdering man in laneway

A jury unanimously found Seamus Morgan guilty.

The area between St John's Lane and the Greenhill estate in Athy, County Kildare where James Keane's body was found.
The area between St John's Lane and the Greenhill estate in Athy, County Kildare where James Keane's body was found.
Image: RollingNews.ie

A CENTRAL CRIMINAL Court jury has found a 49-year-old man guilty of murdering a Kildare man who died from severe blunt force trauma to the head.

Seamus Morgan, 49, with an address at The Hollands, Athy, County Kildare was charged with murdering Laurence Keane, 56, in a laneway in the town on 19 July 2013.

Last week at the Central Criminal Court Mr Morgan pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Keane.

Today a jury of three men and nine women found Morgan guilty by unanimous verdict of murdering Keane in Athy over two years ago.

The court last week heard that Keane had been attacked in a laneway on the night of 18 July.

Prosecution counsel Mr Tom O’Connell SC “evidence of a motive” as there was “long standing ill will” between the two men. The jury was told that during a search of Morgan’s home, a pair of wet, grey and yellow Adidas runners were found in a bin in the garden. Blood samples on the runners matched those taken during Keane’s post mortem.

A deputy State Pathologist told the trial the “deceased had been struck ten significant blows to his head on both sides”.

The man who discovered Keane’s body told the court “there was blood everywhere so I rang 999. I thought he had been shot in the head as there was a hole in his head”.

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Two witnesses testified to seeing Morgan swinging at Keane, calling him “a bastard”.

Mr Justice Robert Eagar thanked the jury for “the clarity of their concentration in the case” and the amount of “thought” they had given to it.

He then exempted them from jury service for a period of four years.

About the author:

Alison O'Riordan

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