Belfast Telegraph

Teen who killed his grandad held on assault charge

By Deborah McAleese

A teenager who had hoped to walk free from jail this week after serving four weeks of a 12 month sentence for killing his grandfather in a brutal attack has been kept behind bars on separate charges.

Eamonn Coyle (18) was due to be released from Hydebank Young Offenders’ Centre on Monday due to time already served, but a last-minute decision was taken to remand him on other charges.

It is understood he is currently being held in custody for an alleged assault.

A Prison Service source said: “Coyle was due out on Monday but a last-minute decision was taken to hold him on other charges,”

Coyle, formerly from Holmview Terrace in Omagh, was 16 when he killed his 78-year-old grandfather Francis O’Neill at his home in Omagh in April 2009 for £80 to pay his rent.

He was jailed at the start of November for 12 months, with two years on probation, after he confessed to strangling and stabbing Mr O’Neill. The length of his sentence for manslaughter led to a public outcry.

It emerged yesterday,however, that the Court of Appeal is to be asked to review Coyle’s sentence.

A spokesperson for the acting Director of Public Prosecutions James Scholes said he would be seeking leave to refer the custodial sentence handed down to Coyle “on the grounds that it is unduly lenient”.

Neighbours of Coyle in Omagh said yesterday they too believe his sentence was too lenient.

“I can’t believe he was due out this week. I am glad he is being held in on other charges,” one neighbour said.

Another added: “We heard he was supposed to be out soon. What sort of a justice system is that. I’m telling you, there are few people around here who will be welcoming him back.”

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph