Michael Ferris – who killed Mr O'Mahony by repeatedly ramming his car with a pronged teleporter – saw his sentence increased to nine years by the Court of Appeal
The inquest into the death of Anthony O’Mahony of Ardoughter, Ballyduff, opened at Listowel Courthouse this week and heard evidence from former state pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster.
In October 2018, Michael Ferris of Rattoo, Ballyduff, was found not guilty of murder but guilty of the manslaughter of Mr O'Mahony by a jury at the Central Criminal Court sitting in Tralee.
Mr Ferris – who killed Mr O'Mahony by repeatedly ramming his car with a pronged teleporter – was sentenced to five years for the manslaughter of his 73-year-old neighbour. This was later increased to nine years by the Court of Appeal.
Dr Bolster told the inquest that she carried out an autopsy on Mr O’Mahony in April 2017. She gave her findings to the inquest on Wednesday, January 18, which was attended by several members of Mr O’Mahony’s family.
Ms Bolster said that Mr O’Mahony suffered five penetrative wounds, right through his body, which led to the total avulsion of his heart and liver.
His heart was found in the car, and his liver in the footwell of the vehicle, the inquest was told.
Ms Bolster said that Mr O’Mahony’s death would have been ‘immediate’.
She said Mr O’Mahony did have signs of natural heart disease, but this was not a factor in his death.
She added that the official cause of death is polytraumatic wounds, which led to total avulsion (tearing away) of the liver and heart.
She said Mr O’Mahony also suffered fractures to his ribs, pelvis, back bone and skull.
Ms Bolster said the injuries suffered by Mr O’Mahony were consistent with the “prongs of a teleporter”.
Evidence was also given of the identification of Mr O’Mahony’s body by his nephew, James O’Mahony. On April 5, he identified the body at University Hospital Kerry to Garda Tina Walsh. She subsequently identified the body to Dr Bolster.
Coroner Helen Lucey said that Mr O’Mahony suffered horrific wounds and, because of this, his death was instant.
The inquest has been adjourned, and a new date will be set as soon as possible to conclude the inquest and record a verdict into the death of Mr O’Mahony.
The inquest into the death of Mr O’Mahony comes following the finalisation of the criminal trial.
In evidence during the trial heard that Mr Ferris had 'snapped’ over a crow banger. He told gardaí that Mr O'Mahony had been using the "crow banger" for 30 years and had paid no heed to anyone when asked to stop.
Mr Ferris used his teleporter to block a rural road and then drove the prongs of the vehicle into Mr O'Mahony's car, causing catastrophic injuries.
In his victim-impact statement at the sentence hearing, Mr O’Mahony's brother, Seamus O'Mahony, said he could not believe his brother was killed over a crow banger.
He said he had known there was an issue with some locals about the crow banger but he had not known "the extent of the anger".
Mr O'Mahony said no one had ever approached him about it, and if they had "all this could have been avoided" and some arrangement could have been put in place.
The fact that his brother was killed over a crow banger "beggars belief" he said, in his victim-impact statement, which was read into court by his son, James.