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Evidence Bray Boxing Club gunman stopped shooting after Pete Taylor was hit, witnesses tells murder trial

Asked by Mr Murray when the shooting ended, the witness said: "It stopped pretty much straight away once he (Taylor) hit the ground."

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The scene outside Bray Boxing Club.  Inset: Peter Taylor (left) and shooting victim Bobby Messett (right)

The scene outside Bray Boxing Club. Inset: Peter Taylor (left) and shooting victim Bobby Messett (right)

The scene outside Bray Boxing Club. Inset: Peter Taylor (left) and shooting victim Bobby Messett (right)

A gunman who opened fire inside Bray Boxing Club stopped shooting after boxing coach Pete Taylor was hit, witnesses have told a murder trial.

The Central Criminal Court has also heard how the gunman appeared "calm" during the shooting which left one man dead and two others injured.

Mr Taylor has already given evidence that he dived "within touching distance" of the shooter after being hit.

Gerard Cervi (34) is on trial charged with the murder of Bobby Messett at the boxing club in Bray, Co Wicklow on June 5, 2018.

He is also charged with the attempted murders of Pete Taylor and Ian Britton at the same location on the same date.

Mr Cervi, of no fixed abode but originally from the East Wall area of Dublin 3, denies all charges. It is the State's case that he was the gunman.

Today the murder trial continued hearing evidence from witnesses who were taking part in the fitness class when the shooting happened.

Alan Hunter said he was facing into a machine with his back to the door when he heard the first bang.

He said he looked around and saw arms and hands holding a gun coming through the doorway.

Mr Hunter said it started to go "bang, bang, bang" and he hit the ground on his hunkers, while describing sparks hitting the walls.

The witness told prosecutor Paul Murray SC, that the shooter appeared "calm" while firing the gun.

He told the jury that he looked up and saw Pete Taylor starting to run towards the gunman, before the boxing coach fell and crashed onto the ground beside him.

"He said to me 'get me an ambulance, get me an ambulance'. At that stage it only hit home what had happened."

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Gerard Cervi (34) has pleaded not guilty to all charges

Gerard Cervi (34) has pleaded not guilty to all charges

Gerard Cervi (34) has pleaded not guilty to all charges

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Asked by Mr Murray when the shooting ended, the witness said: "It stopped pretty much straight away once he (Taylor) hit the ground."

Mr Hunter said he then walked outside and was "in disbelief" at what had happened, describing it as "horrific".

He said at this stage Karen Brown, Mr Taylor's partner, arrived at the scene and that another gym goer came down screaming hysterically.

"It was pandemonium," the witness said.

Under cross-examination from Cathal McGreal BL, he said the whole incident lasted about 20 seconds.

Mr Hunter said a crowd had gathered outside the gym, including those who were in the class, and they were moved back from the scene.

The witness said that he was "probably" discussing the description of the gunman with the other witnesses at this time.

He agreed that, when giving his statement to gardaí, he said on three occasions that the shooter was wearing a black helmet

Alan Hunter also said he couldn't be 100pc certain if the visor on this helmet was up or down.

Mr Hunter also said that nobody asked him for the clothes he was wearing that day and he brought them home.

Fitness class member Linda Gill recalled hearing bangs which she described as "really, really loud" snaps.

The court heard she turned around after a couple of seconds and saw Mr Messett on the ground and someone standing in the doorway.

"Everyone was dropping to the ground, there was a lot of panic," she said.

Ms Gill described seeing Pete Taylor run at the gunman and bleeding after being shot.

"As soon as Pete got hit it felt like the shooter was gone," she said, adding that it "stopped completely" after Mr Taylor had been hit.

Wojciech Bak said he was taking part in the class for the first time that morning and knew one of the other gym goers, Andy Williams.

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6/7/2021 Pete Taylor, with his partner Karen Brown, arriving at the Central Criminal Court. PIC: Collins Courts

6/7/2021 Pete Taylor, with his partner Karen Brown, arriving at the Central Criminal Court. PIC: Collins Courts

6/7/2021 Pete Taylor, with his partner Karen Brown, arriving at the Central Criminal Court. PIC: Collins Courts

He told the jury he was introduced to the class members and paired up with Bobby Messet, who he had not met before.

Mr Bak, giving evidence via video link, said they were about to start their workout when he heard what sounded like firecrackers.

"I looked very quickly to the left and could see blood coming out, I didn't know from where. My brain luckily reacted in the way I just immediately ran right into the changing room."

The witness said he locked himself into a toilet and added that he could remember thinking "that I'm going to die, basically."

After a minute or so he was told that "it's all good now" and he left the toilet.

Mr Bak said he walked out and saw Bobby Messett on the floor.

"I personally couldn't be there. I had to leave, there were pictures I'd never seen in my life and I wasn't ready for seeing anything like this".

He told the prosecuting counsel that he then proceeded to the exit.

The witness said before gardaí arrived he went back into gym to get his motorbike helmet, but after seeing Bobby Messett's body he turned around and left.

Under cross examination from Anne-Marie Lawlor SC, defending, Mr Bak said that a garda later retrieved his items for him, but couldn't be sure which garda.

The trial continues before Mr Justice Michael White and the jury of three men and nine women tomorrow morning.

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