Richard Scullion murder: Killer told he faces life imprisonment

PACEMAKER BELFAST  11/07/2018' Murder victim Richard Gerard Scullion.
PACEMAKER BELFAST 11/07/2018' Murder victim Richard Gerard Scullion.

A Co Down man was handed a life sentence today after he admitted murdering another man in Banbridge last summer.

Despite initially denying that he stabbed Richard Scullion to death last July, a barrister for David Robert Boyd asked that his client be re-arraigned today.

When he was charged with murdering Mr Scullion on a date between July 5 and 10, 2018, the 29-year-old accused replied “guilty.”

The body of the 55-year-old victim was discovered in a flat in the Millmount Road area of Banbridge last July. It is understood he was found in the kitchen of the property and had sustained two stab wounds to his back.

Boyd, from Scarva Walk in the Co Down town, was arrested in the aftermath of the murder – and while he initially denied murdering Mr Scullion, earlier today he admitted his guilt.

Following the guilty plea at Newry Crown Court sitting in Belfast, the defendant was told by Mr Justice Colton: “Having pleaded guilty to the offence of murder, I am obliged to impose a sentence of life imprisonment for you.”

The Judge then told Boyd a tariff hearing will be held next month to determine the minimum time he will spend in jail before he is considered eligible for release by Parole Commissioners.

While a defence barrister revealed he would be seeking reports on his client ahead of sentencing, a Crown barrister said he will be contacting Mr Scullion’s loved ones to see if they wish to provide a victim impact statement.

Boyd’s criminal record was then supplied to the court, the tariff hearing was listed for October 11 and Mr Justice Colton remanded Boyd into custody.