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Wednesday 24 September 2014

Attack victim 'happy' with Guerin report after seven years of 'unanswered questions'

Mary Lynch was assaulted by McGrath in April 2007 after she picked him up and he directed her to take him down a cul de sac. McGrath was convicted of murdering Sylvia Roche-Kelly in the Clarion Hotel in Limerick in December 2007.

Published 09/05/2014 | 16:00

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Mary Lynch. Photo: David Conachy

A woman taxi driver who was brutally attacked by killer Jerry McGrath before she escaped from him has welcomed the Guerin report.

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Mary Lynch was assaulted by McGrath in April 2007 after she picked him up and he directed her to take him down a cul de sac.

McGrath was convicted of murdering Sylvia Roche-Kelly in the Clarion Hotel in Limerick in December 2007.

Ms Lynch says she blamed herself that he later murdered Ms Kelly.

After the attack, Gardai arrested McGrath in Virginia, Co Cavan.

But a few months later, Mrs Lynch heard that McGrath from Dundrum, Co Tipperary, tried to take a little girl out of her parents’ house while they were asleep in another room.

She was alarmed that McGrath had been released on bail and she was later angry that she was not allowed to give her victim impact statement in court. 

Mrs Lynch said she has spent the last seven years seeking answers to how her case was dealt with by gardai.

“I’ve had seven years of this, knowing that I’m still alive (thank God), but knowing that this woman is dead,” she told RTE Radio’s Liveline.

“I know it’s not my fault...but as a victim, that’s the way I feel.”

“All I wanted was answers in the first place, and then I wanted an apology for the way they treated my case.”

"[The report is] a credit to Maurice McCabe,” Mrs Lynch added.

The taxi driver says she is “very happy” with the report by barrister Sean Guerin which was published this afternoon.

“I’m very happy. It’s taken seven years to get to this point. I’ve been asking questions and getting no answers, and I’m just very happy.”

“In truth, no, I wasn’t expecting anything [from the Guerin report]. I’ve been through chief superintendents and superintendents and I thought it would be more of the same, but I thought hopefully it wouldn’t be.”

“I want to thank [Sean Guerin] for bringing it to this point.”

“At this moment, if something happened to my family and friends in that area, I would be afraid for them.”

Ms Lynch said she knows of “serious cases” where victims have not been treated appropriately, including one rape case, and another case where the victim has suffered three strokes “because of it all”.

“I’ve spoken to these people to advise them to go and seek some justice somewhere.”

“With the new Minister for Justice, maybe we’ll get a proper force.”

“It’s the only way the people of this country are going to be able to trust them again.”

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