The family of murdered Irish woman Jill Meagher delivered an emotional victim impact statement this week, as they came face to face with her killer and rapist Adrian Ernest Bayley.
The plea hearing of serial rapist Adrian Ernest Bailey continued this week in Melbourne. The 41-year-old pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of the Irish expat from Drogheda, Co. Louth, 29, in the Melbourne suburb of Brunswick on September 22 last year. He had been on parole when the 29-year-old was attacked.
The prosecutor told the court how the suspect accosted Jill, 29, as she walked home after a night out with co-workers. He raped then strangled his victim and left her body and went home to retrieve a car and a shovel. Homicide squad detectives arrested Bayley on September 27. He made admissions and took police to recover Jill’s body, 50 km north of Melbourne.
Jill’s dad George McKeon told the Supreme Court of Victoria how his daughters' murder had destroyed their family.
Addressing Bayley, who sat in the prisoner’s dock with his head bowed, McKeon said,“It is not okay to rape and murder my child."
In his victim impact statement McKeon told how Jill had hinted to him after he had a stroke in early September last year, that he would become a grandfather in the near future, the Irish Independent reports.
“I would live and the reason she wanted me to live, which she said quite smartly, was she wanted her children to have a young granddad to run around with,” he said.
“I will never see my daughter bearing and rearing her children. I have no other daughters. My wife of 30 years will never be a maternal grandmother.”
Prosecutor Gavin Silbert SC told the court that the accused had a history of horrific attacks on women dating back more than 20 years.
Silbert read a victim impact statement on behalf of Jill’s husband Tom.
“Jill embodied everything I could ever ask for in a partner,” Tom said in his statement.
“What was stolen from me on 22 September 2012 was love, my best friend and my entire word.
What was stolen from us was our future, the possibility of a family and our lives together.”
Jill’s mother Edith was too ill to appear in court, but her victim impact statement told how she is now a broken woman.
“I have been shocked to the core of my being.I feel battered and bruised as a mother, never whole again without her,” Mrs McKeon said.
“I can no longer live an ordinary life and my heart suffers from the deepest wound from which it will never recover. I was her mother for almost 30 years and she was taken so suddenly from my life.
“The impact of Jillian's murder has been catastrophic.”
Bayley is due to be sentenced on June 19th.