independent

Friday 29 August 2014

Fiona left devastated as her dad walks free

RAPIST RELEASED ON BAIL PENDING APPEAL

Published 23/01/2013 | 13:51

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RAPE VICTIM Fiona Doyle says she is ' totally devastated' by the sentence handed down to her father Patrick O'Brien.

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'For him to walk out of here today without serving one day, just one day, it's just devastating. We are totally devastated by the whole thing.'

Her 72-year-old father who raped his daughter over a 10-year period, was sentenced to 12 years, with nine of those suspended due to his ill health. He was released on bail pending his appeal.

O'Brien, of Oldcourt Avenue, in Bray, started raping Fiona when she was just seven years old in 1973.

Judge Paul Carney told the Central Criminal Court this week that this was 'one of the worst cases of abuse of a daughter that you could possibly find'.

Speaking last night, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said he hoped other rape victims would not be discouraged from coming forward in the wake of the outcome of the Fiona Doyle rape case, which the Taoiseach said ' had filled the nation with revulsion'. RAPE VICTIM Fiona Doyle has said that she is ' totally devastated' by the sentence handed down to her father Patrick O'Brien.

'He raped me for ten years and he walks out of here today. I feel like the system has done it to me too. This is my second time going back at this and trying to get this to court,' she said outside the Central Criminal Court on Monday.

'It's been proven that I've being telling the truth. Last week I felt great, I was vindicated and I was told I was telling the truth. He admitted it. He pleaded guilty.

'(But) for him to walk out of here today without serving one day, just one day, it's just devastating. We are totally devastated by the whole thing.'

'I just don't know what else to say.. I'm a fighter and I'll come back again.'

In her victim impact statement read out to the court, Fiona said her mother almost certainly knew what her father would do when her mother went out.

'My mother went off to bingo, leaving me at the mercy of my father. Almost certainly knowing what he would do to me. My father raped me that night. I remember lying in bed that night but being unable to sleep because of the pain".

Speaking outside the court about waiving her anonymity she said: 'I wanted everyone to know what he did to me.

'Too many people have.. turned their back on me,' she said, adding that she wanted everyone to know what she had gone through over the years.

' The family we lost, the friends. My daughter, my grandchildren. The price of this has just been too high for us. I just can't believe that this has happened.'

Asked if he has ever said sorry, Ms. Doyle said: 'No, never. He never said sorry.

'I don't know what's going to happen now. All I can do is just wait and see. I just need to make sure that we're ok and that my kids are ok.'

'From the early age of eight to ten I was called my father's whore. Those words will ring in my head for the rest of my life. And so will today.'

During the hearing, Detective Garda Darragh Phelan said there was a culture of fear and violence in the home and that Fiona Doyle's mother would call her a whore while beating her.

'Ms Doyle said she believes her mother knew about the abuse and that she was cast as 'the other woman' in an 'evil marriage', said the garda.

The chairwoman of the Dublin Rape Crisis Centre Ellen O'Malley Dunlop described the decision to suspend the majority of O'Brien's sentence as mystifying.

'It does not give a positive message to others who had courageously reported heinous crime,' she said.

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