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Murder trial 'We were playing a sex game', man accused of brutal stab murder told gardaí

A pathologist's report found Ms Valdgeima had suffered "multiple penetrating slash and stab wounds, particularly to the face, head and neck"

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Skaidrite Valdgeima had multiple stab wounds, even to the eyes

Skaidrite Valdgeima had multiple stab wounds, even to the eyes

Skaidrite Valdgeima had multiple stab wounds, even to the eyes

A man accused of stabbing a woman to death, who he was having an affair with, told gardaí "we were playing a sexual game", a murder trial jury has heard.

Valerijs Leitons (25), with an address at St Kevin's Gardens, Dartry, Dublin, is charged with murdering Skaidrite Valdgeima (34) on June 26, 2019, at the Binary Hub aparthotel on Bonham Street, Dublin. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity.

The Central Criminal Court trial has heard that Mr Leitons and Ms Valdgeima, a married woman, had struck up a friendship that became sexual.

The couple met at a concert in May 2019 and began seeing each other frequently.

A pathologist's report found Ms Valdgeima had suffered "multiple penetrating slash and stab wounds, particularly to the face, head and neck".

Dr Allan Cala, who carried out the post-mortem examination, told the jury that the deceased had "defence-type injuries on both arms".

He suggested these likely happened when she tried to grab the knife or tried to block it. A psychiatrist said Mr Leitons was suffering with a mental disorder but was not impaired enough to meet the criteria for a "not guilty by reason of insanity" verdict.

Dr Damian Smith, a consultant forensic psychiatrist at the Central Mental Hospital, told the prosecution that the accused had shown symptoms of a psychotic disorder as far back as February 2018 and may have stopped taking his medication.

The expert witness said it happened during an "acute psychotic lapse of paranoid schizophrenia, most likely precipitated by his non-adherence with prescribed antipsychotic medication".

A facilitator attendant at the Binary Hub aparthotel told the prosecution that he recalled Mr Leitons checking in in the company of a woman.

Brian Keenan said his night was "disturbed dramatically" when a woman in a dressing gown came to the reception area in a panicked state.

When Mr Keenan ran up to level four of the aparthotel he saw a woman "very much covered in blood" lying on the ground with a man holding a knife crouched over her.

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He told the prosecution that the man was the same one who had booked into the accommodation as Mr Leitons.

Mr Keenan agreed the accused was "acting bizarrely".

Garda Brian Mulvey, from Kevin Street garda station, said he arrived at the Binary Hub at 3.45am.

He said a man was jumping up and down waving his arms and pointing towards Bridgefoot Street saying: "He gone that way."

Gda Mulvey decided to drive after the suspect and saw Mr Leitons walking on a nearby footpath.

"He then fled and ran around the back of the car in the direction of the quays," he said.

Gda Mulvey's colleague, Garda John Noone, chased Mr Leitons and tackled him. The witness said Gda Noone was screaming that the accused had a knife. Gda Mulvey said Mr Leitons was very aggressive. When the accused was in the back of the patrol van, the witness said a knife or box cutter fell from his person.

Gda Mulvey saw his hands were "heavily stained' with blood. When Mr Leitons was asked if he had stabbed a woman, the accused said: "We were playing a sexual game."

The witness said he found Ms Valdgeima with stab wounds to her arms, chest and face. He said that a section of her nose was missing, there were stab wounds through her cheeks and she had been stabbed through the right eye.

In his interviews on June 27, Mr Leitons said his partner had tried to provoke him.

The accused told gardaí he thought he had fallen in love with Ms Valdgeima but said she was "toying" with him and because of her behaviour his psychosis had started again.

When asked if he had stabbed the deceased, the accused man said: "It looks like it, yes."

The trial continues before Mr Justice Paul Burns and a jury.

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