A female Garda left a court in tears after the woman who “viciously assaulted” her mouthed to her from across the court after receiving a prison term of 18 months.
At Ennis Circuit Court, Judge Gerald Keys sentenced Marie Linnane (19) of Griffin Rd, Kilrush to two years suspending the final six months for assaulting Garda Ann Marie Hughes at Kilrush Garda Station in September 2012.
Judge Keys said that Ms Linnane had ‘viciously assaulted” Garda Hughes.
Garda Hughes left the court wiping tears away after Ms Linnane mouthed some words to her about the assault before being led away by prison officers.
In evidence, Sgt Ronan O’Hara said that Garda Hughes was in the station by herself at the time when she was attacked.
In the attack, Ms Linnane grabbed Garda Hughes by the hair and slammed her head against a desk before trying to choke her at the public office at Kilrush Garda Station.
He said: “Garda Hughes wound up on the ground with the accused, who refused to let the Garda up. She bit her on the arm at the point and commenced to choke Garda Hughes. Garda Hughes became fearful for her life. There wasn’t anyone else in the station nearby and she was under attack.”
Sgt O’Hara said that when Garda Hughes was trying to place Ms Linnane in the cells, Ms Linnane head butted her into the face.
Photos taken of Garda Hughes shortly after show Garda Hughes with an open wound the forehead.
Counsel for the State, Stephen Coughlan BL said that in memos of interview, Linnane said that prior to the assault, Garda Hughes asked her about her child and she felt that the Garda was insinuating that she wasn’t looking after her child.
Sgt O’Hara said: “She took it up the wrong way. Garda Hughes was only making small talk and she took it an inappropriate comment.”
Sgt O’Hara said that Ms Linnane was on a mix of legal and illegal drugs at the time.
In a victim impact statement, Garda Hughes said that after the attack “I was having nightmares and couldn’t sleep. I have flashbacks, headaches and I’ve been upset.
She said: “To this date, she has shown no remorse for what she did.”
Counsel for Ms Linnane, Mark Nicholas BL said that his client suffers from psychological difficulties and Judge Keys said that he was led to believe from the medical reports that Ms Linnane wasn’t of sound mind.
In sentencing, Judge Keys said that he wanted to praise the bravery of Garda Hughes for curtailing Ms Linnane and putting her into the cell.
Judge Keys said that the reason he wasn’t imposing a consecutive sentence on Ms Linnane on the two year jail term sentence imposed for obtaining monies by deception from Paddy Quane was because of Ms Linnane’s medical reports handed into court.