Court Number Two at the Four Courts was full to overflowing on Wednesday afternoon as the trial of John O’Brien entered its third day. 
The compact court room features three rows of seating for the public on its ground level and a gallery overhead. Within minutes of its doors being unlocked, both sections of the steep walled court room had standing room only.
Many had come to give evidence on the day; many more had travelled from Waterford to offer support in the case before Mr Justice Barry White which is expected to run for three weeks.    
Box upon box of files were ferried into the room by Waterford Gardaí, almost occupying an entire bench directly behind Mr O’Brien, who denies the murder of his wife Meg Walsh in October 2006.
Directly behind the benches occupied by both legal teams sat members of Meg Walsh’s family, including her daughter Sasha Keating and the deceased’s brother James.  
During the two-plus hours of proceedings, Mr O’Brien, wearing a pin-striped suit, shirt and sky blue tie, occasionally composed a note which he passed onto his legal team. 
Sitting just a few feet from her stepfather, Ms Keating listened as counsel for the defence Iseult O’Malley read a text message that the 18-year-old had sent to Mr O’Brien’s sister Teresa last July.
A dropping penny would have resonated like cannon fire through the chamber as Ms O’Malley told the court of the message’s details.
After Mr Justice White drew the day’s proceedings to a close, in which 17 witnesses had taken to the stand, reporters huddled together, verifying quotes before filing their copy.
Minutes later, John O’Brien quietly left the court room to speak to members of his legal team in an office just off the main lobby area beneath the landmark building’s dome.
Shortly afterwards, surrounded by her family, Sasha Keating emerged from the court, met by a couple of photographers anxious to secure their shots for the following morning’s papers.
A TV cameraman was positioned at the end of the block as the family left the court house behind them, something they’ve grown accustomed to this week.     
 The trial continues.