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PRAY FOR KILLER; Mother says: I'll forgive man who stabbed my Val.

A murder victim's mum last night forgave her daughter's killer.

Carmel Linehan wept and said: "He too has a mother and one day he'll have to meet his Maker and account for what he did."

Carmel's daughter Valerie died after teasing boyfriend Gerry Mullane over his lack of prowess in bed.

The couple had been boozing heavily. He had knocked back 10 pints of Guinness. She'd had seven pints of lager.

Valerie, 21, wanted a romantic climax to their night out.

But gas fitter Mullane was drunk and incapable and, infuriated by her taunts, stabbed her twice and strangled her as they lay naked in bed at their flat in Cork. Yesterday as he was jailed for life at Dublin's Central Criminal Court, Valerie's mum said: "I'm not screaming for revenge. I'll pray for him."

But son Owen, 21, was not so forgiving. "I hate his guts," he said. "I hope he rots in hell.

"I never liked him from the day I met him. When Valerie wanted to break it off, he locked her in the flat.

"He'd been giving Valerie a hard time before he killed her.

"I warned him never to lay a finger on her or I'd sort him out.

"But I never realised he'd kill our Val."

He added: "He was a real Jekyll and Hyde character."

Broken-hearted Carmel said: "I don't hate him. I know Valerie was crazy about him and loved him very much." Her daughter and Mullane, a 33-year-old father-of-two from Emly, Co Tipperary, had been dating for only seven months.

Carmel, separated from husband Tom for 11 years, said: "I miss Valerie terribly.

"She wasn't just my only daughter, she was my best friend too.

"Yes, I do feel bitter about losing her.

"I wake up some mornings wishing I was dead so I could join her in the grave.

"I no longer have any fear of death and I can't wait until the day I'm reunited with her."

Carmel added: "She had a real happy-go-lucky personality and would put a smile on everyone's face. Why he snapped and killed her we'll never really know.

"But he has to live with taking my Valerie's life and it will haunt his conscience until the day he dies.

"He will have to meet his Maker some day and account for what he did.

"The only thing I can do is pray for him." Mullane, who is separated from his wife, admitted the killing but he claimed he had done it after being provoked.

He said he snapped when Valerie teased him because he couldn't get an erection when they tried to have sex.

He told the court she had been extremely agitated after having a miscarriage five days previously.

Mullane told the trial he couldn't live with himself for killing his lover.

Mr Justice Paul Carney told the jury they would have to decide if Mullane was guilty of the murder or manslaughter of Valerie.

But, after an absense of two hours, the panel of eight men and four women returned a unanimous verdict of murder.
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Author:Kierans, John
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:May 2, 1996
Words:513
Previous Article:STEVE STAUNTON; The Voice of Controversy.
Next Article:Murderer jailed for sex attack.



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