‘Wheelie bin’ killer bids to clear name

Shauneen Boyle
Shauneen Boyle

A woman jailed for the murder of a disabled man whose body was dumped in a wheelie bin has launched a bid to clear her name.

Shaunean Boyle’s lawyers told the Court of Appeal that issues around bad character evidence and a co-accused’s perjured account at trial rendered her conviction for killing Owen Creaney unsafe.

Mr Creaney, 40, died two days after being beaten repeatedly at a house in Craigavon in July 2014. His body was then put into a green recycling bin and discovered later by police.

Last year Boyle, 26, and her 30-year-old co-accused Stephen Hughes were both found guilty of his murder.

The jury heard Mr Creaney had been punched, kicked and stamped on at Hughes’ home.

He sustained more than 60 injuries.

Boyle, from Edenderry Park in Banbridge, and Hughes both denied attacking him and blamed each other.

However, the prosecution maintained that the pair attacked Mr Creaney together.

Boyle’s legal team mounted a challenge to the conviction, claiming there were flaws in how the bad character evidence was handled.

Barristers John Kearney QC and Michael Forde also raised points about whether a nose injury was inflicted before the victim died.

Stressing that it had been a circumstantial case, Mr Kearney argued there were reasons why Boyle lied by telling a close friend she had jumped on Mr Creaney.

It was contended that she thought it would mean more chance of securing medical help.

“That was undoubtedly a lying admission in its complete and full acceptance of responsibility,” Mr Kearney said.

“The admission is the main pillar of the prosecution, but in terms of safety we say it’s far from clear.”

The appeal continues.