An Garda Siochana Apologises to Joanne Hayes

An Garda Siochana have apologised to Joanne Hayes for their conduct and lies during the investigation into the murder of a baby in County Kerry in 1984. The baby was discovered by a farmer on a beach in Caherciveen. The investigation lead detectives to Joanne Hayes who had given birth to a baby prior to the discovery but had stated she had not had a baby when she arrived at hospital with problems consistent with having given birth. Joanne Hayes and her family met with Detectives and admitted that she had had a baby but that baby was a still birth and was buried on the family farm, the Detectives refused to believe her and attempted to convict her of the murder of the baby found on the beach in Caherciveen and later suggested that she had had twins with two different men.

Today at Caherciveen Garda Station Superintendent Flor Murphy apologised to Joanne Hayes for the conduct of the gardaí during the investigation into the murder of the baby found on the beach at Caherciveen, he said "On behalf of An Garda Síochána, I would like to sincerely apologise to Ms Hayes for that, as well as the awful stress and pain she has been put through as a result of the original investigation into this matter, which fell well short of the required standards."

The Tribunal set up following the investigation had already proven that Joanne Hayes was not the mother of Baby John. Superindentent Murphy said ""The Tribunal headed by Mr Justice Kevin Lynch into that investigation rightly criticised many aspects of that investigation. For those failings, I apologise."

In 1984 two babies where found dead. These babies would become known as the Kerry Babies.

At the time Joanne Hayes was having an affair with a married man, she was a young single mother already having had a child by the same man. She became pregnant with a second child and had that baby at her family home. The baby was still born and buried on the family farm. She was brought to hospital following the birth. There she and her family denied she had had a baby. This baby would become known as the Kerry Baby.

A few days later a farmer found the body of baby on a beach, this baby would become know as Baby John. Detectives from the Murder Squad were sent to Kerry from Dublin to help with the investigation. During the investigation the detectives were informed that Joanne Hayes had attend hospital following the birth of a baby but had denied having given birth.

Detectives quickly put the murder on Joanne Hayes, an got her to such a point that she admitted the murder, after denying the murder and telling them that her baby was buried on her farm.

On finding her baby on her family farm the Detectives concocted a story suggesting that the two babies were hers and that she murder Baby John because he had a different father to that of the Kerry baby. However Baby John's blood type was not the same a Joanne's meaning the baby could not have been her baby, this was discovered at the time of the initial investigation. It has now taken 34 years for An Garda Siochana to apologizes to Joanne Hayes for their lies.

A tribunal in 1985 had completely dismissed the Detectives findings, while also dragging the Hayes family through the mud.