Two women arrested on Tuesday as part of the investigation into the murder of Ballymoney man Steven Peck, have appeared at Limavady Magistrates’ which is currently sitting in Ballymena this morning (Wednesday, January 13), on charges relating to the 33-year-olds murder.
Appearing via video link from Coleraine custody, the two were named as mother and daughter Lisa Gemmell (29) of Union Street Ballymoney and Easther McCook (46) of Urbal Road Dervock.
The defendant, Lisa Gemmell, is charged with ‘perverting the course of justice’ whilst Easther McCook is charged with ‘assisting an offender’.
A police officer in the case told the court he believed he could connect the defendants to the charges and that police would be opposing bail for both defendants due to the risk of ‘interference with witnesses’.
The court heard that it is alleged that McCook had remained with a witness in the case during the attack and took her mobile phone preventing that witness from warning the victim Steven Peck. It was further alleged in court that the defendant provided a false alibi for one of the other male defendants in the case, namely her son Brian McCook.
The court further heard that the 29-year-old defendant Gemmell is alleged to have deleted text messages which could be relevant to the case from a mobile phone belonging to that witness later the same evening.
After hearing bail submissions from the defendant’s Barristers in the cast, Mr Eoghan Devlin on behalf of Gemmell land Mr Dean Mooney representing McCook, District Judge Peter King remanded both defendants to custody on grounds of the potential of ‘interference with witnesses’ to appear via video link at Coleraine Magistrates’ Court on February 1.