Belfast Telegraph

Friday 26 December 2014

Family anger at gun suspect hearing

Melanie McCarthy-McNamara was shot dead on February 7 in a housing estate in Tallaght in a drive-by attack
Melanie McCarthy-McNamara was shot dead on February 7 in a housing estate in Tallaght in a drive-by attack
Keith Hall is helped into a car outside Tallaght Court in Dublin

The family of a teenage girl murdered in a drive-by shooting has told the suspected killer to rot during an angry court confrontation.

Keith Hall, 23, is accused of shooting 16-year-old Melanie McCarthy-McNamara with a sawn-off shotgun two weeks ago.

The teenager was gunned down as she sat in the back of a car in a housing estate in Tallaght, Dublin. Her boyfriend Christy Moran was also in the car at the time.

Hall, of Kilmartin Drive, Tallaght, was arrested last Thursday with a teenager. Both appeared at an evening sitting of Tallaght District Court. As well as being the main murder suspect, Hall is also accused of possession of a double-barrelled sawn-off shotgun with intent to commit an indictable offence.

Tallaght District Court heard Hall made no reply when charged with murder by Detective Garda Michael McGrath at Rathfarham Garda Station at 3.06pm. The accused appeared in court dressed in grey tracksuit bottoms and a dark hooded top. He was remanded in custody for a week to Cloverhill court.

There were angry scenes as Hall's brief hearing drew to a close. Inside the court, there were shouts from some of Melanie's relatives including "may you rot" and "you killed my daughter-in-law" as Hall was led away.

Melanie was shot late on February 7 in a housing estate on Brookview Way. She was shot in the head through the back window of a car. The killing has been blamed on a shooting linked to a feud involving local groups with links to the travelling community and disputes over drugs.

A 17-year-old male, who was also being questioned in connection with the murder investigation, was brought before the same court sitting on separate charges including drugs and guns offences. The youth, who cannot be named due to his age, pleaded guilty at a previous court hearing to unconnected charges of possession of heroin. He is due to be sentenced next week.

The teenager, who has also been remanded in custody, faced further charges at the evening sitting of possession of a shotgun and possession of shotgun cartridges.

Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan and travellers' support groups have appealed for calm and no retaliation over the killing.

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