independent

Friday 21 July 2017

Slapped lady and took handbag

A man who slapped a woman in the face and stole her bag has received a two-year suspended sentence.

Jonathan McCarthy (21), Kilmantin Hill, Wicklow town, appeared in Wicklow Circuit Court last Wednesday. He had previously pleaded guilty to the robbery, which occurred at around 11.20 p.m. on August 30, 2015, after the victim had gotten off a bus in Wicklow.

The woman had come home from Dublin on the bus when McCarthy followed her. He ran towards her, slapped her face and pushed her to the ground. He wrestled the bag from her and got all of her belongings except her phone before running away.

The woman was shaken and shocked and she was sick outside her house before she went in and called gardaí.

The gardai drove around with the woman and ultimately identified McCarthy.

Two weeks later she encountered McCarthy in a nightclub and confronted him about the incident. He apologised to her for what he had done.

Judge Michael O'Shea said that it was a spontaneous and opportunistic robbery. 'It's shocking that a young lady can't walk home safely at night in Wicklow without being attacked and robbed,' said Judge O'Shea.

'On the night on which I was thrown to the ground and robbed I got physically sick a number of times,' said the injured party in a victim impact statement read to the court by state prosecutor Paul Murray. 'I was distressed and scared to think that I could be assaulted so close to my home on my way from the bus stop.'

She said that she is now afraid walking home from the bus stop and family will collect her when possible.

'I am afraid going out by myself and get really anxious and suspicious of strangers. I stiffen up if I meet the perpetrator anywhere.'

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