Search

Jail for gypsy who turned gun on boxer after fight between women travellers turned nasty

16:18 23 May 2014

Francis O

Francis O'Donoghue

Archant

A traveller who shot a former Team GB boxer and his brother during a row between two warring families was jailed for more than 16 years today.

Martin Ward. Picture: Lawrence LustigMartin Ward. Picture: Lawrence Lustig

Francis O’Donoghue, 27, blasted Martin Ward in the chest during a heated confrontation on a travellers’ site in Brentwood in August.

He also shot Mr Ward’s brother John in the thigh as he tried to break up a scrap between his sister, Roseanne, and O’Donoghue’s wife.

After wounding the brothers, O’Donoghue turned the gun on to their relatives, shouting “I will do you all in”, Woolwich Crown Court heard

The shooting followed a spat between O’Donoghue’s 25-year-old wife Theresa and a 15-year-old girl from the Ward family.

Prosecutor Tony Prosser said O’Donoghue encouraged the pair to end their dispute over a fight, as is the tradition of the travelling community.

He said: “As the girl was only 15 it was thought that another member of the Ward family, Roseanne, should take her place.

“However, Roseanne said she wasn’t keen as he had recently had a baby in caesarean section.

“While Roseanne was shopping in Harold Hill she was confronted by Theresa O’Donoghue.”

The court heard that a fight then broke out between the pair on Lizvale Farm, in Navestock.

O’Donoghue told his wife to “bite and eat” Ms Ward, before he was confronted by the Ward brothers.

O’Donghue left and returned with a pistol before shooting them.

He fled, resulting in a manhunt, and was finally tracked down on October 12.

O’Donoghue, of Russell Avenue, in Wood Green, pleaded guilty ahead of a trial for attempted murder to wounding.

Jailing O’Donoghue for 16-and-a-half years, Judge Andrew Lees said: “Your actions have clearly caused great upset in the community.”

He was cleared of two counts of attempted murder.

Read more:

Francis O’Donoghue pleads not guilty to attempted murder following shooting of former Team GB boxer Martin Ward

Francis O’Donoghue, 27, charged with attempted murder following shooting of former Team GB boxer Martin Ward

Two women arrested in Navestock farm attempted murder investigation

Latest Romford News Stories

15:38
Trevor Howard (left) remains hopefuly about opening the micropub in Main Road, Gidea Park.

Plans to open the borough’s second micropub are on hold.

Junior doctors on strike outside of Queen's Hospital in Romford

Junior doctors in Romford have agreed to halt further strikes as negotiations with the government restart.

The Duchess of Cornwall on a visit to the People's Palace at Queen Mary's University to see a production by the London Chamber Orchestra. Students from the Havering Music Service

Talented musicians from the borough were treated to a royal visit on Wednesday afternoon.

35 minutes ago
Town Hall

Residents are being asked to comment on the council’s draft plans for building affordable housing.

11:30
A CCTV still of Arvydas Filipavicius during one of his armed robberies

An armed robber has been jailed for 10 years after conducting a series of attacks on Lithuanian convenience stores with an air gun.

Mayoral candidates: Sian Berry (Green), Zac Goldsmith (Tory), Sadiq Khan (Lab) and Caroline Pidgeon (Lib Dem)

Havering goes to the polls today to vote for the capital’s next mayor in what has been described by commentators as the “nastiest campaign in decades”.

Theresa and Rob Mottram with daughter Lily-May

The wife of a man with a terminal brain tumour who cannot receive any more treatment, says she is heartbroken.

Yesterday, 17:10
The RSPCA Essex and Havering branch is asking for people to be

In the week when foxes in Leicester found the net to crown themselves Premier League champions, warnings have been issued to homeowners to ensure Havering’s foxes don’t score an own goal.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe