Stephen Kelly

Stephen Kelly of Cullaun, Inistioge, Co. Kilkenny. was the driver of the lorry that caused the death of Graham Norris. On the morning in question he had the main road blocked at Graiguerush Cross, Kilmacthomas with a 59ft 6in lorry and trailer in the hours of darkness and when Graham Norris came on the scene he could only see the skyline in the background when he entered the straight stretch of roadway leading to the junction where he lost his life. He could not have been alerted to the danger he faced as there was no side lighting on the lorry trailer that was across the road in front of him. Stephen Kelly was totally responsible for this crash. He gave a brief statement to the Sgt.John McKnight at the roadside on the morning of the crash.

He then went by agreement to Tramore Garda Station 3 days later where he was asked to sign it. Sgt. McKnight confirmed that at that stage Kelly informed that he had met a car on the road at the junction and that he stopped to let it pass and then began the manoeuvre that blocked the road. He failed to tell the Garda that their was a witness at the crash scene. ( View Garda Investigation page for details ).

The Gardai at no stage sought or requested the driver of Kellys phantom car to come forward and the view of every observer is that if anyone met a 59ft lorry & trailer with its lights on stopped back from this junction at 7am on that dark morning they would most certainly remember it' especially when the news broke.

The only conclusion is Kelly invented this car to boost his story of what happened and it gave the impression he was stopped. The invention of this phantom car was to play a major part in he been found not guilty of the charge of

dangerous driving causing death.

The Garda Vehicle Inspector Sgt J. Robinson confirmed that when tested Kellys Vehicle had only 17.25% braking power out of 100% and it is the view of all experienced observers that Kelly had crossed over on to his incorrect side of the roadway way back from the junction and when he spotted the lights coming in the distance he was not able to stop rushing the manoeuvre and blocking the pathway of Graham Norris killing him instantly.

Of course his invention of the phantom car got him off the hook and he got away with it

The Family of Graham Norris are requesting to hear from anyone that has information or who was at the scene of this Fatal Crash to contact them. Naturally if the Driver of the Phantom Car is out there they want to meet that driver urgently.


At no stage did Kelly or anyone representing him ever contact Grahams Family to offer them one word of Sympathy.

He did not attend Grahams Removal or Funeral.

He did not offer a Mass Card or a Flower as a token of Sympathy to the family.

He told Waterford Circuit Court that his work place was a line from Dublin across to Galway and down to the very south Cork & Kerry

However the real truth was' rather than avoid the area where Graham Norris Died he spent most of his time operating in this very area' ending up by entering Coillte property along the Norris Homestead Boundary notwithstanding the

 fact that he had 3 points of entry to the location.




Grahams brother accidentally met Kelly at a local filling station and mentioned to him had he any sense of responsibility or feeling for Graham's parents' but Kellys response was to ignore him and to contact his favorite Garda , The Garda who attended the Crash scene, claiming harassment.  

It is very hard to comprehend how Kelly who has a young son himself could show no remorse whatsoever for the death of another families son as a

direct result of his own actions.

Kelly was found Not Guilty on some of the charges made against him to a Jury in the Circuit Court not because he was innocent'  but because the State failed to properly deal with the Crash Scene Investigation.

His Circuit Court appearance took place on Tuesday January 25th 2007 where he was convicted on Two Charges with one taken into account:


The following is an extract of Kellys Evidence to the Court when he was put on the stand by his Barrister Mr Coleman Cody.


Mr Coady; Mr.Kelly please take the stand

I am 26 years & live with my girlfriend and 3yr son. I have a clean driving record & I am working for Jim Lanigan for about 4 years.

I went to the yard where I keep the lorry near my house on the morning of October 12/11/2005.

I checked to see if all the sidelights on the trailer were working. I let the lorry heat up to build up the brakes and I checked the tail lights in the usual way as I reversed tight to a wall and can see the shadow when I am testing. I can also see the side lighting both sides in my side mirrors. They were working. I arrived at the cross at 7.A.M and as I approached I met a car so I stopped and let it pass and then crossed over to the other side of the road and turned down to my left very carefully keeping off a bank on the left and avoiding a stop sign on my right. I saw a reflection of a light on my side window as I turned down the road I was entering and then heard a screech of brakes and a bang. I jumped out with my phone in my hand and called the emergency services. Last evening I went to the location a Mahon Bridge to examine this alternative route suggested by Sgt McKnight.

I drove up in my car and I say that this route is not a suitable alternative as the bends are too sharp' I would have to make two moves at some of the bends.


Mr.Delaney Counsel For The State Cross Examined:


Mr Kelly' On Tuesday here you were asked to plea' and you pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Answer :Kelly: That's Correct.


Question;  You pleaded not guilty to the charge of no Cert on road worthiness on the trailer knowing you could not produce it and that in fact there never was a cert for the trailer.

Answer :Kelly: Not guilty

Question; What about the undercarriage rail.
Answer :Kelly: I don't know about this' I leave it up to the owner

Question; On the morning of the accident did you check the lights.         Answer: Kelly: Yes I did and they were all working.

Question; Are you sure of what you are now saying.                           Answer: Kelly: Yes I always check everything.

Question;   In your statement to Sgt McKnight you said on that morning I went to the lorry' I hopped in started up' changed the tach- let the brakes build up and took off. Sgt McKnight read your statement back to you and asked was there anything you wished to change before you signed and You said no' nothing to change. You are now saying something different.

Answer: Kelly:  Well there must have been a misunderstanding when McKnight asked me' had I checked the lights I thought he said did you walk around the lorry.


Mr Delaney: You are standing up there now brazing it out when you know full well that you did not check the lights.

Answer :Kelly:   No I checked the lights they were all working.


Mr.Delaney: They were not working when checked by Garda Robinson You have heard his evidence how do you explain this.

Answer: Kelly:   Sometimes if I drop a stick on the trailer floor the bulb would pop out' the impact done it.

Mr Delaney: If that is the case why did the bulb on the front light of the trailer not pop out.

Answer :Kelly :  Don't know.

Mr.Delaney: When you heard the bang what was your position on the road.

Answer: Kelly:   The tractor unit had entered the side road and the trailer was across the road.

End of Questioning

Click to View

Official Court Convictions

Newspaper Report


To the Norris family Stephen Kelly proved he was a cunning liar that could not be believed as he fitted answers to the Questions. His only objective was to get away with his crime and due to the Blunders made by

Officers of the State he succeeded.


To tell a Jury under Oath that the lights were working when in fact the light fitting was missing tells you a lot about Kelly.


For the Officers Of The State to not be able to produce this Photo

 to the Jury says a lot about the State.

This Photo was taken from the Report of Mr. Paul Roels

Specialist Investigations Accident Engineer for the Family of Graham Norris taken while the Lorry was impounded in Garda Custody.



Kelly was back in Court on February 21st 2007 at Kilmacthomas District Court where he was convicted of a further offence relating to the Crash.



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