FAMILY SPEAKS OUT AS KILLER GETS LIFE; Justice Has Been Done ..but It Will Never Bring Back Our Mammy

Article excerpt

Byline: By NEIL COTTER

A MAN who burst into a house and blasted a granny to death with a shotgun was jailed for life yesterday.

Timothy Rattigan, 26, was found guilty of the murder of devout Catholic Joan Casey at her Tallaght, Co Dublin, home in April 2004.

Unemployed Rattigan, from St Dominick's Terrace in Tallaght, was sentenced at Dublin Central Criminal Court.

He had denied killing the mother of five.

Joan's distraught daughter Martina yesterday said: "She was a gift from God and the best mum in the world and we miss her terribly."

Mrs Casey's family broke down in tears as the guilty verdict was read out in court.

Her daughter Martina told the court of the "devastating" effect her mother's death has had on them.

She said: "I'm not sure what difference my testimony will make. At the end of the day, my mammy is still gone. I miss my mammy terribly.

"Anything on this earth cannot affect us the way this has. We lost the most important person in our lives."

Mrs Casey was shot dead through her bedroom door at 6am after two men with a shotgun smashed in through the front door of her Avonbeg Park home.

Earlier in the trial, the court heard how she had moved to sleep in that room "because she thought she would be safer there".

Martina said the way her mother was murdered was particularly distressing for the family.

She added: "The circumstances in which mummy died, it's just unreal.

"You'd think it would happen in a movie, not here. My mum was murdered. It's not something I like to say.

"We never got the chance to say goodbye and tell her we loved her. …