Thursday 30 October 2014

Criminal laughs on radio as he recalls assaulting female garda

Man laughed as he told he ‘blackened her eyes’ and was jailed

Aishling Phelan and Geraldine Gittens

Published 09/01/2014 | 08:31

The interviewee had been in and out of prison since he was 14 years old.
The interviewee had been in and out of prison since he was 14 years old.

A criminal with 78 previous convictions has mocked the justice system on national radio insisting that prison “isn’t that bad”.

The former prisoner laughed as he told Newstalk’s Pat Kenny how he attacked a female garda, and left her with two black eyes.

Speaking on Newstalk’s The Pat Kenny Show he said, “it’s kind of a habit you know and to tell you the truth prison isn’t that bad.’’

He spent two-and-a-half years in St Patrick’s Institution for young offenders after beating up a female Garda when he was 18-years-old.

“The most serious crime I was convicted of was, when me and a friend, we assaulted two Garda.

“We blackened her (one of the gardai) two eyes,” he recalled before bursting into laughter.

“They were trying to arrest my friend and my friend put up a struggle and I just jumped in and battered them.

“It’s nice to see one of them in pain for a change, he said before admitting he had no regrets about the incident.

A spokesperson from the Garda Representative Association said the attitude shown by the prisoner should be condemned. He said over two gardai are assaulted everyday in Ireland.

"Society can't condone this attitude. Every responsible citizen should condemn the gratification of violence on female gardai," the spokesperson told independent.ie.

"Potential for violence is always there especially when dealing with the unpredictability of human behaviour."

"Some people have no respect for people or property and certainly not the gardai."

Around 800 assaults on gardai were reported in 2011. The number of assaults on gardai is increasing, and they are not always reported, the spokesperson said.

"They're not always recorded. Unless the garda is forced to take sick leave, the assaults are not recorded."

"So for those 800 assaults that were reported in 2011, the gardai would have been badly injured and they required three days off."

"An assault on gardai is an assault on society."

Meanwhile, in the Newstalk interview, the prisoner who remained anonymous, said he would never feel remorse for what he had done.

He explained that the prison system would not deter criminals from reoffending - saying it would not “frighten you away from doing stuff”.

He said: “Well a jail is a jail like, you will always miss your home but it’s not bad,’’ he said.

The interviewee had been in and out of prison since he was 14 years old.

The 30-year-old recalled having ‘‘around 78 convictions’’ since he was a teenager.

“They’re not serious though, there’s been about 30 that are public order for being drunk around the place.

“I think I have ten for burglary and a couple for robbed cars - you know the usual,” he added.

He said that Portlaoise prison was clean because it has showers in the cells.

The father-of-two said he had “an awful life” explaining that he had been in foster homes since he was a child.

The criminal had been released from Portlaoise prison a month before his interview with Newstalk reporter Francis Fitzgibbon.

A recent study by the CSO on crime reoffending rates among 5,500 offenders found that more than half of prisoners reoffend within three years.

It found that one third of former prisoners reoffend within six months and that young males have the highest recidivism rates.

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