The devastated parents of a young musician who was beaten have told how violent crime changed their lives forever.
Gavin O’Connor, 22, died nine years ago after being hit in the head while driving his own car.
The young man was a guitarist for a local classic rock group.
Connor McClelland, a 19-year-old man who did not know Gavin at the time of the murder, was sentenced to life in prison for an unregistered attack.
The monster came across Gavin from Monaghan County, Ireland, sleeping in his car on June 4, 2011 in Caricmacross, a town in the county. The two men attended a music festival in town that night.
He claims that Gavin stole the car after he fell asleep in the back seat.
McClelland told police that after Gavin woke up, he repeatedly hit him on the head with a sledgehammer and drove the car towards him when his victim hit the road.
Interestingly, he admits that the injuries look like they were caused by an accident.
McClelland pleaded not guilty in his trial but was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
He has already been given a neutral venue visit and will be eligible for a hearing on his second parole next spring.
Gavin’s heartbroken parents are calling for the implementation of the 2019 parole law to stop it
Mam Helena told the Irish Sunday Mirror: “We think we have been sentenced to life imprisonment, and we are afraid of the day Connor McClelland will be released.
“Our lives changed forever when Gavin was murdered and our brutality came to bury us.”
Father Gary added: “What happened to Gavin is unbearable. It was edited by someone who has no thoughts for human life.
“He can lie in jail now and eat well and come out at any time, it’s just wrong. There are bad people in the world, this cast is pure evil. “
And Helena insisted that McClelland should “never be allowed” for his work.
He added: “He didn’t even know Gavin. Nine years later we still don’t know what happened to him.
“Gavin left here on Friday night – at first he said he was not going.
“When he was going out, I had a terrible feeling that he was not coming back. I called him and said, ‘Cow, have mercy on me and take care of yourself’ and he said, ‘I’ll do it, ma’am.’
“And his girlfriend beat me until the next morning.
“The doctor said Gavin should have three or four separate sections of the brain, but it was difficult to see what he was seeing.
“He said his heart was still pounding because he was so young.
“After Gavin died I thought ‘I thought’ when was the last time I told him I loved him? ‘”
Sadly, the couple also lost their second son, Patrick, in a road accident just two years later.
But Gavin’s music still thanks his father, Gary, who gave his instrument a new lease of life with The Reel Beats, a band made in his memory.
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