NewsCrime Desk

Grieving dad tells how killer beat victim weeks before her death

Crime DeskBy Eamon Dillon
Ray Gralton and Sara
Ray Gralton and Sara

Killer Ray Gralton beat his victim for weeks before the attack that finally killed Sara Staunton.

The tragic woman’s father, Pat, told how the brutal reality of their violent relationship never came out in court.

He described the court case in which Gralton pleaded guilty to manslaughter as “a besmirchment” of Sara’s character.

This week Gralton, a former top boxer, was jailed for eight years after he admitted battering the 28-year-old to death in December 12013 at her Roscommon home.

In an emotional interview with Sean O’Rourke on Radio 1 he told how he warned his daughter that boxer Gralton would kill her.

“Sara babs, he’s hit you, he’s going to kill you love,” he told her.

Three weeks later “to the day” she was dead.

Pat Staunton described previously picking up his daughter with black eyes and bruised forehead and how Gralton had smashed her head through her treasured TV.

Not long before her death Sara had told him she wanted to get her life back in order.

“She said she wanted to move back into the house, get clean and get her kids back. She was so happy because she had a plan,” he said.

Mr Staunton said how her had “begged her” to leave Gralton.