Mom wanted abuser dad STEPHEN CAHOON out of her life. He retaliated by threatening to take her to court for "access" to their unborn child. Guess he didn't consider that enough of a threat, as Dad later confessed to strangling and beating Mom to death, though he has pleaded not guilty to murder. Yup, that really makes sense. You claim you want "access" to the unborn child, but you murder the pregnant mother. Real paternal affection here. Just goes to show that a lot of custody pleas are just bogus control and abuse moves.
Murder trial hears victim wanted accused out of her life
22/10/2009 - 16:55:11
The victim in a murder trial told her killer she wanted him out of her life weeks before she died, and he threatened to take her to court for access to their unborn child, the Central Criminal Court heard today.
Mother-of-four Jean Teresa Quigley (aged 30) died on July 26, 2008 in Cornshell Fields, Shantallow, North Derry. A post mortem found she was strangled and beaten.
Father-of-one Stephen Cahoon (aged 37) of Harvey Street, Derry admits killing her, but has pleaded not guilty to her murder.
Gerry Merrigan, former partner of Ms Quigley’s mother, Emma McBride, told the jury he and Ms McBride went to her daughter’s house a week or two before she died.
He told Patrick Marrinan SC, prosecuting, that Ms Quigley was telling the defendant to go and return her keys.
“I want you to leave. I want you out of my life,” she said.
“Jean was shaking and upset and wanted to go to her mother‘s house,” he testified.
He said that a couple of days later he helped Ms Quigley return two puppies, dog food and a power washer to Cahoon’s flat.
Ms Quigley’s 17-year-old babysitter said he heard the victim and defendant arguing about their unborn child days before the killing. The teenager, who can’t be named, said Ms Quigley returned home at 2.25am on Thursday, July 24.
He said he was chatting to her when there was a knock. He answered the door and the defendant “walked straight on in”.
“You were good enough to be in my company all day,” Cahoon told Ms Quigley, he said.
He said Cahoon got himself a bottle of alco-pop from the fridge and while out of the room, Ms Quigley asked the teenager to stay until he left.
He said the accused kept asking her about some money he had given her and complaining that she’d left him stranded in town that day.
“She was on about moving house because she was pregnant and said she didn’t trust Stevie with a wee one,“ he said “He wanted to know where she was going. He said he wanted access to his child and would take her to court if necessary.”
“Jean asked him to leave three or four times. He said he’d leave when he finished his drink,” he said.
Andrea Nichol, who grew up with Ms Quigley, said the victim visited her the evening before the killing.
“She was in happy form,” she recalled. She said that while there, Cahoon rang her the victim five or six times.
Ms Quigley‘s best friend, Majella Cox, said she knew the victim for 22 years and spoke to her every day. She said there was a change in that contact when Ms Quigley started going out with the accused.
She said both Ms Quigley and Stephen Cahoon were pleased when the victim told her she was pregnant and that Ms Quigley cut down her drinking.
“She cut it down to three bottles on a Friday night and three on a Saturday night,” she said, adding that Ms Quigley was also taking driving lessons.
Ms Cox also confirmed that she and Ms Quigley had gone to a sex shop months earlier and bought a DVD, handcuffs, a vibrator and a couple of other items “just out of craic”.
Stephen Cahoon was charged under the Criminal Law Jurisdiction Act of 1976 and was given the option of being tried in Dublin or the North. He opted for Dublin and became the first person to be tried before a jury under the legislation.
The 1976 Act was brought in to allow for trials in the Republic for offences committed outside the jurisdiction in Britain or the North.
It has rarely been used and up until now the only cases have been brought before the three-judge, non-jury Special Criminal Court, which deals with terrorist offences. Last year a Belfast man was convicted of murder at the Special Criminal Court under the 1976 Act.
The trial continues before Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy and a jury of seven women and five men.