Teen involved in 'terrifying' assault avoids prison term
A Dublin teenager who took part in the "terrifying" assault of a boy who was stabbed a number of times has been given a three-year suspended sentence.
The boy, who turns 18 tomorrow, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to violent disorder and assault causing harm on September 19, 2015. He cannot be named as he is a juvenile.
Judge Melanie Greally suspended the prison term on strict conditions, including that the accused carry out 240 hours community service. She said that he had repeatedly hit the victim on his leg and head with a baton and in some "misguided way" had felt he was justified in getting involved.
The judge noted that the victim had a "very promising sporting career", which he had been denied because of the accused's actions.
She accepted that the accused got involved in "a relatively advanced stage" in the incident and accepted that there was a favourable report from the Probation Service.
The victim, also a 17-year-old boy, was socialising with friends in north Dublin on the evening in question when he noticed a female friend being attacked by another girl.
Garda Brian Healy told prosecution barrister, Fiona McGowan BL, that the victim held back the aggressor and told her to "leave it out", giving his friend time to flee to safety. But the girl then accused him of hitting her and said she would have him "sliced up", Gda Healy said.
A short time later, the boy was approached by a gang of teenagers, including the girl's brother, who stabbed him a number of times in the back without warning, the court heard. Two other teenagers hit him with a crutch before the victim "ran for his life", Ms McGowan said.
However, there was blood pouring down his back and he was caught by the teenagers, who dragged him back and started kicking him in the head. At this point, the accused came on the scene and started hitting the victim on the head and legs with a baton.
Ms McGowan said the victim suffered post-traumatic stress disorder, failed his Leaving Cert, and a soccer scholarship for the US fell through as a result.
Seamus Clarke BL, defending, said his client had taken steps to deal with his offending behaviour.