Judge tells mums to 'take up knitting' after violent school row
A JUDGE has told a court that two young mothers involved in a violent row outside a primary school "should behave in a different way and maybe take up knitting".
Judge Patrick Durcan made his comment after imposing two four-month suspended sentences on sisters Rose Mahon (24), of Ballaghboy halting site, Quin Road, Ennis, and Laura Molloy (23) of An Pairc, Bruach na hAbhainn, Ennis, for their role in the daylight row at the Holy Family Junior School in the town on March 20, 2012.
At Ennis District Court, Co Clare, the judge said that he didn't accept that the two were minor players in the drama that unfolded at the school that day "and were as equally guilty as anyone else involved".
As part of the wider incident at 1.45pm on the day, gardai said that as parents collected their small children from the school, Mahon's husband, Conor Mahon, ran across the school playground with a slash-hook along with a 13-year old armed with a machete, giving chase to two others.
The two others, Darren Maughan and Michael Maughan, barricaded themselves into a classroom containing eight five-year-old children and one teacher.
In the incident, Darren Maughan "was afraid for his life and thought he was going to be killed".
At the same time, Ms Mahon and Ms Molloy attacked a Land Rover belonging to Thomas Sherlock outside the school and pleaded guilty to causing €1,500 worth of criminal damage.
Solicitor for the two, Daragh Hassett, said: "There was an attack from another family and they attacked back."
He told the court that Mr Mahon and the teenager had already been dealt with before Ennis Circuit Court through a mix of suspended sentence and adjournment.
The judge said: "If (the women) want to get their housing problems sorted, they should behave in a different way and maybe take up knitting or something like that."