Garda killer Pearse McAuley is this afternoon being sentenced at Cavan Circuit Court.

Garda killer McAuley stabbed estranged wife 13 times with wedding present

Paul Neilan
At Cavan Circuit Court
Garda killer Pearse McAuley used a steak knife he received as a wedding present to stab his estranged wife, Pauline Tully, 13 times on Christmas Eve of last year, Cavan Circuit Court heard at lunchtime on Friday, November 27.
McAuley (50), in custody, was attending a sentencing hearing at the court after he pleaded guilty to producing the steak knife at Kilderry, Kilnaleck, on December 24, 2014.
He also pleaded guilty to falsely imprisoning former Sinn Fein councillor Ms Tully and with intentionally/recklessly causing serious harm to her on the same occasion. McAuley has also pleaded guilty to threatening to kill her brother Tommy during the same incident.
The court heard that McAuley is facing life for the false imprisonment charge and the serious harm charge, 10 years for threatening to kill Ms Tully’s brother, Tommy and five years for the production of the steak knife.
Judge John Aylmer heard that though McAuley was expected at the house for Christmas Eve, when their two children were four and seven years old, he turned up early and drunk and struck Ms Tully in the eye upon entering the house.
What followed was a three-and-a-half hour ordeal where McAuley repeatedly stabbed Ms Tully in the kitchen, puncturing her lung and repeatedly tried to slit her throat as she fought back but was losing blood after he stabbed her in the upper chest, neck and abdomen. During the stabbing Ms Tully said she thought she was going to die and even got the knife off him on occasion, which she described in her statement as “quite slippy with all the blood”.
It emerged that the knife he brought to her home, in which the children were also witnesses, had been given to them as a wedding present as part of a set that was never opened which Ms Tully gave to McAuley for his Ballyconnell flat after their estrangement.
During the attack in the kitchen Ms Tully fought back, hitting McAuley with a kettle and a glass bowl but kept slipping on the blood on the floor and worktops.
McAuley would sit down on the ground, stand up go over to Ms Tully and kick and punch her and try to cut her throat and laughed. He had stamped on her mobile phone and ordered the children upstairs.
He took a bottle of Cool Swan from the fridge and drank it until he passed out on the floor next to her.
She managed to crawl to his car but it kept konking out and would only go backwards down the hill. He followed, threw stones and bricks at the car to stop her and picked up a boulder until help arrived in the shape of Tommy Tully and his sons.
Mr Tully “boxed” McAuley into a ditch and raised the alarm.
The Strabane man was one of four IRA men who pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Detective Garda Jerry McCabe, the court heard.
Mr McCabe was killed in Adare, Co Limerick, in June 1996 during the attempted robbery of a post office van.
McAuley was released from prison in 2009 having served ten years of a 14 year sentence for the killing.
Ms Tully, who attended the court with her family, read from a victim-impact statement, which she could have had gardai read aloud. Sentencing was adjourned to next week.