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Saturday 22 October 2016

Woman (22) assaulted partially paralysed stroke victim with wine bottle during aggravated burglary

Declan Brennan

Published 01/02/2016 | 17:04

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A woman has been remanded in custody after a jury convicted her of assaulting a partially paralysed woman with a wine bottle during an aggravated burglary.

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Grace Tormey (22) of Parnell Street, Sallynoggin, Dublin had pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to aggravated burglary at Rollins Villas, Sallynoggin on November 16, 2012.

The victim, Lisa Lee, had previously suffered a stroke and was partially paralysed. She told Gerardine Small BL, prosecuting, that she awoke to hear people banging on her front door.

She and her then partner, Jason Kelly, barricaded themselves into an upstairs bedroom while Tormey and an unidentified man smashed their way into her home.

Mr Kelly jumped out a window to go and get help and Ms Lee was unable to hold the door. Her attackers managed to get into the bedroom and started kicking and punching her.

She was lying on the ground during the attack because of her paralysis.

She said someone pulled out a knife and that Tormey smashed a bottle over the back of her head. She said during the assault, Tormey kicked, punched and pulled lumps out of her hair.

When gardai arrived at the house they found Tormey “apparently attending” to Ms Lee's facial wounds. Tormey claimed to gardai that she had been walking past the house, saw the front door damaged and had come inside to help Ms Lee.

The victim told gardai that no burglary had taken place and they weren't needed. Detective Garda Darragh Phelan testified that he visited the victim in hospital the next day to see if she was willing then to make a statement about the assault.

She did make a statement and gardai later arrested Tormey. Det Gda Phelan said the victim had injuries to her face and legs.

After a four day trial and one and a half hours of deliberations a jury returned a unanimous verdict of guilty. Judge Patricia Ryan thanked the jurors for their time and care on the case.

She refused a defence application to allow Tormey to remain on bail and remanded her in custody until a sentence hearing next week.

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