Saturday 25 November 2017

Driver who imprisoned stone-throwing boy in his damaged van avoids jail

Robert Dempsey acted in the heat of the moment
Robert Dempsey acted in the heat of the moment

Eimear Cotter

A motorist who falsely imprisoned a teenage boy who threw stones at his van has been given a four-month suspended sentence.

Robert Dempsey (28) drove the boy (14) around for an hour before dropping him at the side of the road.

He wanted the teen to pay for his cracked windscreen, a court heard.

Dempsey, of Castleknock Grove, Castleknock, claimed he was going to take him home to his parents, but the boy begged him not to as he would get into trouble.

He said he was driving the boy around while he tried to get the money to pay for the damaged windscreen.

His lawyer Terence Hanahoe said Dempsey, an engineer, "made a bad decision" and the matter "looks much worse than it was".

Judge David McHugh said he accepted Dempsey had "acted in the heat of the moment" and the incident was not pre-planned, but he refused to leave him without a conviction. He suspended the four-month sentence for four months.

Dempsey had admitted before Blanchardstown District Court to false imprisonment at Beechpark Avenue, Castleknock, on January 11, 2015.

Sgt Maria Callaghan said the boy was with friends when he threw an item at oncoming traffic and it hit the defendant's van.

Sgt Callaghan said the boy claimed it was an acorn, but Dempsey, in response, said it was a rock.

The youths dispersed and Dempsey followed them before locating the teenager at the pedestrian bridge at Castleknock Tennis Club.

Sgt Callaghan said the pair walked into a tunnel and CCTV showed them going to the van.

The CCTV showed a dispute between them before Dempsey forced the boy into his van.

The boy was not physically injured.


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