Horror killing | 

Man jailed for life for murder of young mum Jennie Poole had previously assaulted ex partner

David Poole, the victim's brother, said that her two children were "robbed" of their mother

A family photo of Jennifer Poole. PIC: Collins Courts

Robin Schiller

A Dublin man who stabbed his partner seven times with a kitchen knife in her apartment has been jailed for life for her murder.

Mother-of-two Jennifer Poole (24) was fatally assaulted at her home in Melville Drive, Finglas, on April 17 last year.

Her partner of around one year, Gavin Murphy (30), pleaded guilty to murder earlier this month.

The defendant, from Coultry Drive in Ballymun, was given the mandatory sentence of life imprisonment at the Central Criminal Court this afternoon.

Evidence was given that Ms Poole was observed with numerous injuries throughout the relationship and that Murphy had a previous conviction for assaulting an ex-partner and producing a knife.

The court heard that they had been in a relationship since the previous May and that there were "ongoing difficulties".

Det Sgt Damien Mangan told Dean Kelly SC, prosecuting, that friends and family noticed bruising on Ms Poole's face and body in the months, weeks and days before the murder.

Gavin Murphy pictured at Blanchardstown District Court Picture: Collins Dublin

On the day of the incident a neighbour of Ms Poole said she heard high-pitched screaming "like never before" coming from the apartment and heard the victim shouting "Stop, please don't do this" over and over.

When she went to the apartment, she looked through the letter box and saw Gavin Murphy holding a kitchen knife in his hand and appeared to be pulling it away from Ms Poole.

The witness told gardaí she saw a smudge of blood on the floor, that Murphy grabbed a white towel to wipe his hand or knife and that he went into a bedroom to put on his clothes.

Joe and Jackie Poole, the parents of murdered woman, Jennifer Poole, hold a framed photo of her, outside Central Criminal Court where Gavin Murphy received a life sentence for murdering Jennifer, in April 2021. PIC: Collins Courts

The witness told gardaí that she screamed at him to be let in and that he told her "Fuck off you".

He then fled over the rear balcony before emergency services were alerted.

An investigation was launched and when Gavin Murphy met with gardaí at his uncle's house over an hour later he said that an argument occurred at the house.

He claimed a knife was produced, that he got it in his hand and that "in a split second" he used it.

He also told gardaí he "blacked out", that he "couldn't even look at her" and that he then left and went to Poppintree Park.

David Poole, holds a framed photo of his murdered sister, Jennifer, as he leaves the Central Criminal Court yesterday (FRI) after Gavin Murphy received a life sentence for murdering Jennifer Poole, in April 2021. PIC: Collins Courts

In a prepared statement to gardaí after his arrest he took responsibility for the killing, but that he didn't plan to kill her and that he "truly loved her".

Murphy also told gardaí "I'm really sorry and I didn't want this to happen".

He was later charged and earlier this month pleaded guilty to murder.

The court was told that Ms Poole suffered seven stab wounds and that the cause of death was haemorrhaging and shock from multiple stab wounds.

Det Sgt Mangan confirmed that Gavin Murphy had 13 previous convictions including for having a phone in custody, assault causing harm, burglary, producing an article and criminal damage.

The court was told that Murphy assaulted a former partner and her mother and that a knife was produced during the incident.

David Poole, the victim's brother, said that her two children were "robbed" of their mother and that their lives have changed forever.

Her son and daughter were aged four and seven at the time of her killing.

He said his sister could not have been a more caring mother who did everything for them and that now all they have is memories of their beautiful mother.

Jason Poole also gave a statement saying that his sister was "beautiful inside and out" and had a "heart of gold".

He said being told of the killing felt like a nightmare and that her children had to be told their mother was murdered "by a man she didn't want anymore".

Jason Poole also said that no punishment can compare to the pain that the defendant caused them and their family are tormented by the fact that she spent her last minutes on earth "with the very worst of humanity."

Gavin Murphy sat with his head facing towards the floor for most of the hearing.

Mr Justice Paul Burns said that it was "yet another case of a violent attack upon a young woman" by a male partner with fatal consequences.

Offering his condolences to the family of Jennifer Poole, he imposed a sentence of life imprisonment for the "vicious" murder.

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