|The late Ciaran Ó Conghaile|
Wednesday October 10th is the one year anniversary of the killing of Ciaran Ó Conghaile. He was also known affectionately as “Kiwi” by many of his friends. He was found dead on Nahant Avenue in Dorchester early Monday morning October 10, 2011 just yards from his home. He had been shot in the chest.
Found by a firefighter neighbor at about 1 am, he was pronounced dead at the scene. He still had cash in his pockets when found, with police theorizing that he may have resisted an attempted robbery.
Mr. Ó Conghaile, who lived at a three-floor condominium complex on Nahant, had resided in Boston for more than a decade, and also has a sister living in the Boston area. Tragically, his brother Micheál was drowned in 2000 when a freak wave swept him off the pier on his home island of Inis Meáin. One of thousands of undocumented Irish workers in the Boston area, Mr. Ó Conghaile had lived locally for years without being able to return home.
At a January 9 court hearing in Boston, John Graham (17) pleaded not guilty to each charge of a nine-count indictment, including the October 10 slaying of Inis Meáin, Aran Islands native Ciaran Ó Conghaile (36). Held without bail by Magistrate Gary D. Wilson, Graham’s trial date has been set for January 7, 2013.
After Graham was arrested on November 6 in connection with the October 30 shootings of two men aged 18 and 20 on Monsignor Lydon Way, evidence gained during that investigation enabled detectives to link him to the Aran man’s death.
Graham – who would have been just 16 at the time of the alleged offenses – faces charges of first-degree murder, armed assault with intent to rob, and unlawful possession of a firearm in relation to Mr. Ó Conghaile’s killing.
He was also arraigned on two additional counts of armed assault with intent to rob and single counts of armed assault with intent to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, aggravated assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and unlawful possession of a firearm in connection with the Monsignor Lydon Way incident.
In court, Assistant District Attorney Ian Polumbaum outlined how the prosecution’s case will focus on three key areas: ballistic evidence which they say proves the same gun was used in all shootings; video footage from surveillance cameras in the area; and statements Graham is alleged to have made to “other persons aware of his involvement” in the crimes.
Graham is set to be tried as an adult on all charges under Massachusetts Law, with a trial date provisionally set for January 7, 2013.