Wednesday 17 July 2019

Garda rejects note that he said McCabe 'watched schoolgirls'

Maurice McCabe at the Disclosures Tribunal in Dublin Castle. Photo: Collins
Maurice McCabe at the Disclosures Tribunal in Dublin Castle. Photo: Collins
Shane Phelan

Shane Phelan

A garda superintendent has rejected a claim that he alleged Sgt Maurice McCabe watched girls coming out of the local secondary school.

The claim emerged in the notes of a Garda Ombudsman investigator who interviewed Ms D, the young woman who alleged she was sexually assaulted as a child by Sgt McCabe.

According to the note, Ms D alleged Det Supt John O'Reilly told her father, also a garda, that "M McC would go to the local secondary school and watch the young ones coming out of the school". The note said another garda, Peter O'Sullivan, "saw what was happening and tried to calm the situation down".

Questioned by Kathleen Leader, counsel for the tribunal, Det Supt O'Reilly said he was "absolutely flabbergasted" by the claim.

"I never said it, nor have I any knowledge about it," he said. "As far as I am concerned, that is not true."

Earlier this week, the tribunal heard evidence from Ms D's father that he discussed his daughter's wish to give an interview to a journalist with Det Supt O'Reilly.

Read more - Charleton Tribunal: Journalist says he was not given file on Ms D allegation against Maurice McCabe

Ms D's father testified that Det Supt O'Reilly, who was a friend, suggested Paul Williams, as he had dealings with him in past.

However, this account was disputed by Det Supt O'Reilly.

He insisted it was Mr D who first suggested the name of Mr Williams and asked for his number. "I had no reason to suggest Paul Williams over any journalist. None," he said.

Det Supt O'Reilly said he called Mr Williams to let him know he could expect a call from Mr D.

He told Michael McDowell SC, for Sgt McCabe, that he made it clear to Mr Williams he wasn't getting involved beyond asking him to take a phone call from Mr D or from Ms D.

Allegation

"He may have asked me who they were. As a matter of fact he probably did. I outlined that Ms D was the young lady who made the allegation against Sgt McCabe and there was nothing further discussed," he said.

Asked by Mr Justice Peter Charleton if he thought it had been a good or bad idea to facilitate Ms D's contact with the journalist, Det Supt O'Reilly said: "Do I feel bad about where we are at now? Yes, I do. Friendships have deteriorated and a lot of things have gone on in the public domain which are not nice."

Irish Independent

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