A man convicted of manslaughter for his role in the killing of popular Londonderry musician Jim Gilchrist in 2005 was hospitalised after being viciously attacked in a house by masked men with crowbars after a gun jammed, it has emerged.
A defence lawyer for Daryl Quigley (29), whose address was given on court documents as Laurel Avenue, Coleraine, told Ballymena Magistrates Court that one of the gang had tried to shoot his client, but the “gun jammed” before Quigley was assaulted with crowbars and badly injured.
The attack happened in Rasharkin, Co Antrim, at 10pm on Thursday, September 29 this year.
The details of the assault on Quigley emerged as the defendant, who has a substantial criminal record including several for theft, admitted a charge of stealing a £150 32in TV from a Sainsbury store in Ballymena.
Quigley was spotted on CCTV and when he returned to the store on a later date he was identified.
Jailing Quigley, the judge made reference to his manslaughter conviction. Jim Gilchrist - a well known blues musician in Londonderry - was set upon while on his way home from a motorcycle club meeting in September 2005.
The body of the 62-year-old father-of-five and grandfather was then dumped in the River Foyle.
Quigley was jailed for 10 years in 2008 for manslaughter but released in 2011.
Jailing Quigley for four months for shoplifting, District Judge Chris Holmes said it was “somewhat ironic” the defendant had been the victim of a vicious assault as “hundreds if not thousands” of people had been victims of his crimes over the years which included a manslaughter conviction.
The judge told Quigley he was a “down and out thief” who was a “complete drain on society”.
It was not the first time Quigley had shoplifted. In the run-up to Christmas last year, Quigley had stolen from several shops in Coleraine, one of the items being a ruby necklace.
Coleraine Court was told at the time that he went shoplifting to get “Christmas presents” and he claimed he was “off the rails on drink and drugs”.
Meanwhile, also at Ballymena Magistrates Court on Thursday of last week, Quigley was charged with hijacking a taxi belonging to Radio Taxis in Coleraine and allegedly threatening to kill a man on December 17 last year.
When asked if he wished to say anything in relation to the charges Quigley replied: “Not guilty.”
He is due to appear for arraignment at Antrim Crown Court on November 24.