News Courts

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Delay in sentencing of Dodder ‘flasher’

Tom Tuite

Published 28/01/2013 | 15:01

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SENTENCING of a man who was found guilty of performing a lewd act in front of a woman on a river-side path in Dublin 4, has been adjourned.

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Mark Curneen (23) of Marlfield Gardens, Johnstown Road, in Cabinteely, Dublin, suffers from Joubert Syndrome, a rare genetic disorder which affects the part of the brain which controls balance and co-ordination.

He had denied exposing his genitals and masturbating, at the Dodder Walkway, in Dublin 4, on August 25 2011, but was found guilty of an indecent exposure charge at his Dublin District Court hearing on June 5 last.

His case had been put back for a pre-sentence probation report to be prepared and for psychiatric and neurological reports on him to be furnished to the court.

Today Judge Catherine Murphy heard that Curneen was not present for the case as he had been remanded in custody last week by another court after he pleaded guilty to a separate offence. She adjourned sentencing him until a date in March.

In evidence given earlier, the woman had told Judge Murphy that she had been walking home from work when she noticed a man wearing a white hooded top and black trousers approaching slowly from the opposite direction.

She had said Curneen had his hood pulled up but she could see his face and his hands were down around his pelvis region, underneath the pockets of his top.

She became cautious because of a strange expression on his face. She had alleged that Curneen passed her and she glanced back and saw his his trousers were open and his “tongue was lolling around out of his mouth”.

The witness said his penis was facing upwards, “he had exposed himself, he was holding himself and stroking himself”.

She said she was shocked and alarmed as she walked away quickly and then telephoned Irishtown garda station.

“I know from the way he was holding himself, it would be hard for me to believe he was urinating,” the woman had told the court.

Garda Shane Hogan arrived at the scene a few minutes later and spoke to Curneen who was still on the Dodder Walk until he was cautioned to leave the area.

Detective Sergeant Barry Walsh brought the woman around in an unmarked Garda car to see if she could identify the man who had exposed himself.

At Lansdowne Road, near the Aviva stadium and the train station, she saw him standing at a wall and was certain that it was the same man.

In evidence, Curneen had claimed he had been on the Dodder Walkway, needed to go to the toilet and thought there was no one around.

Judge Murphy had found him guilty last June and heard at that stage that Curneen, had no prior criminal convictions. She had been told he had health problems since infancy including difficulties controlling his muscles. He was diagnosed as having Joubert Syndrome and his father had told the court that this meant his son could have intellectual as well has physical difficulties.

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