Sunday 18 August 2019

Kinahan feud killers' sister spared jail for kicking female garda in the face

Christine Keogh pictured outside of court
Christine Keogh pictured outside of court
Regina Keogh
Jonathan Keogh
Feud murder victim Gareth Hutch
Andrew Phelan

Andrew Phelan

A SISTER of Kinahan feud murderers Jonathan and Regina Keogh has been spared jail for kicking a garda in the face in an alcohol-fuelled street attack.

Christine Keogh (45) had been told to move on during a public order disturbance when she “singled out” a female garda and assaulted her.

Keogh had been attending her brother and sister’s trial every day at the time of the incident, and was under “phenomenal pressure” when she lashed out as there was a threat on her own life at the time, Dublin District Court heard.

Judge Bryan Smyth gave her a six-month suspended sentence after hearing she had paid €1,000 in compensation, to be donated to charity at the garda’s request.

Regina Keogh
Regina Keogh

Keogh, of Avondale House, North Cumberland Street in the north inner city, pleaded guilty to common assault and assault causing harm to Garda Caroline Purcell, as well as failing to obey garda directions.

The incident happened at Mountjoy Square on July 9, last year.

The case was heard previously and when it came back before the court yesterday, Judge Smyth was told the money had been paid.

Defence solicitor Emer O’Sullivan said Keogh, who had no previous convictions, had been under enormous stress at the time and what happened was out of character.

Jonathan Keogh
Jonathan Keogh

The judge suspended the six-month sentence for a year on condition that the accused keeps the peace and is of good behaviour.

Previously, the court heard that gardai were called to deal with a public order disturbance and Keogh, who had been on a bench drinking, resisted Gda Purcell and kicked her twice in the head and face.

She was pepper-sprayed and “kept lashing out”.

One of the kicks caused soft tissue injuries but the garda had since fully recovered, the court was told.

Gda Purcell gave a victim impact statement, saying Keogh had intentionally targeted her and “singled her out” for physical and verbal abuse on the night.

It was not a single act and she said the accused had continued her abusive behaviour after she was arrested. Gda Purcell said she did not believe that the pressure Keogh was under excused her behaviour.

Feud murder victim Gareth Hutch
Feud murder victim Gareth Hutch

At the time, Jonathan (33) and Regina Keogh (41) were on trial at the Special Criminal Court for the gun murder of Gareth Hutch.

Christine Keogh had been attending the trial and had been under extreme pressure, Ms O’Sullivan said.

There had been a “very real and genuine threat” on her life and two weeks earlier her car was burned out.

Keogh’s brother Michael had also recently been murdered.

She had been attending counselling for extreme stress throughout the period.

Before the incident, she was sitting down on a bench having a few drinks, which she would not normally do, Ms O’Sullivan had told the court.

She apologised and was remorseful for what was a one-off incident amid a life of pro-social behaviour.

Judge Smyth said he appreciated the pressure that the accused had been under but her behaviour that night was “inexcusable”.

Regina and Jonathan Keogh, along with co-accused Thomas Fox (31), were convicted last November of murdering Mr Hutch (36), who was gunned down as he got into his car in the car park of the Avondale House flats on May 24, 2016.

The three are serving life sentences for the killing.

Christine Keogh had no involvement in the Gareth Hutch murder case or the Kinahan/Hutch feud.

Herald

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