A woman captured on CCTV carrying the body of Odhrán Kelly has been remanded back into custody due to breaching bail conditions.
Stephanie McClelland appeared at Lisburn Magistrates’ Court today (Saturday) where Pat Vernon, defence solicitor for the 36-year-old, conceded she had breached her bail by failing to answer the door to police.
“She was at the house but she didn’t answer the door,” he told District Judge Rosie Watters.
Freed on bail three weeks ago McClelland, from Shan Slieve in Lurgan, faces a charge of assisting an offender in that knowing another person had committed murder, she assisted that offender to impede their apprehension, prosecution or detention on December 3 this year by “disposing of the body of Odhran Kelly.”
On bail and facing the same charge is 43-year-old Andrea Stevenson, from Edward Street in Lurgan while two men, Shane Harte, 31, from Headington House and Gary Damien Scullion, 31, from Edward Street, both in Lurgan, are in custody charged with the murder.
A third woman, Crystal Angela Redden (30) from Garland Avenue in Lurgan, is charged with perverting justice in that in on December 7, last year, she made a false statement “with intent to pervert the course of justice.”
When McClelland was granted bail three weeks ago , Det. Srg. Donnelly outlined that when police were called to a car on fire on Edward Street just after 4am on December 3, officers discovered a “badly burnt body” lying beside the burnt out vehicle.
Officers called at the last registered address – Stevenson’s flat on Edward Street – but on their way, they spotted a “large amount of blood” on the door of Scullion’s flat opposite the property and when they went inside, officers discovered blood stained beer bottles, “a signifiant amount of congealed blood, drug paraphernalia, a large amount of cash and gloves with blood on them.”
DS Donnelly said when officers went into Stevenson’s flat it “smelled strongly of bleach” and there was a male, dressed in just his boxer shorts, sitting in the kitchen where there was “clothing and blood stained washing in the washing machine.”
“He was arrested for murder,” said the detective, as were McClelland and Stevenson.
During initial interviews McClelland denied involvement but she later admitted it was her captured on CCTV “carrying the body” of 23-year-old nursing assistant Odhran from the flats to the car.
DS Donnelly said police believed her role was “in the aftermath, taking the deceased to a vehicle where the deceased was burnt….she was seen on CCTV with another female and a male carrying the body to the vehicle.”
The detective added that McCelland had denied being involved in the murder or being involved in the burning of Mr Kelly’s body.
“Is it the case that she just happened to be visiting a friend that night,” enquired the judge at the time and the officer agreed “that’s possible, enquiries are ongoing” but that is what McClelland claimed during interviews.
In court today, Mr Vernon said he was not applying for bail as McClelland had no proposed bail address to go to.
He told the court that despite the previous address not being disclosed in open court, “the press attended the house the next day” and as a result, the householder has withdrawn their address.
Remanding McClelland back into custody, District Judge Watters adjourned the case to February 2.