John Paul McDonagh: Brothers of stabbing victim appear in court

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John Paul McDonagh was seriously injured at Coolcullen Meadow in Enniskillen and died on Monday morningImage source, PSNI
Image caption,
John Paul McDonagh died after being stabbed in Coolcullen Meadow in Enniskillen

Two brothers of a teenager who was killed in Enniskillen have appeared in court on charges relating to the incident.

John Paul McDonagh died after being stabbed in Coolcullen Meadow.

Gerard McDonagh, 23, from Drumawill Gardens, Enniskillen, and his 15-year-old brother are jointly accused of wounding, possessing a spade as a weapon and affray.

Gerard McDonagh is also accused of having a knife.

The pair appeared by video link at a court in Dungannon, County Tyrone.

A detective said that during interview Gerard McDonagh denied bringing weapons to the scene, and could not recall seeing either of his brothers with any either.

He maintained this when shown CCTV footage.

Refutes feud claim

Opposing bail, the detective said his main concerns are ongoing feuds in the Traveller community, witness interference and the potential of both accused absconding.

A defence solicitor said the youth denied the charge and that he was a grieving "15-year-old who lost his brother".

"There is no CCTV evidence of my client holding any weapon. He refutes this matter is the result of a feud," added the defence solicitor.

A defence lawyer for Gerard McDonagh said it was suggested his client "picked up a spade and swung out after seeing what was happening".

"He did not bring a weapon to the scene," the lawyer told the court.

'Tensions are heightened'

Last week bare-knuckle boxer Joseph Joyce, 29, from Coolcullen Meadow was charged with murdering Mr McDonagh on 11 April.

His solicitor said he claimed he had acted in self-defence.

The judge said: "This is the other side of the incident, in which unfortunately the brother of the two in court today lost his life.

"Tensions are heightened and the whole incident was caught on CCTV and phone footage.

"I am concerned there may be a desire to avenge the death of John Paul McDonagh and on that basis, bail for both defendants is refused."

The accused will appear again by video link next month.