Thursday 22 March 2018

Man jailed for five years after kicking and hitting his heavily pregnant former girlfriend

The Central Criminal Court
The Central Criminal Court

Fiona Ferguson

A Crumlin man who launched a violent attack on his heavily pregnant former girlfriend has been given the maximum sentence of five years.

Judge Patrick McCartan noted there was "little to be said" for Daniel Prenderville (26) after he failed to offer an explanation or apologise for the assault.

Prenderville is currently serving a six year sentence for possession of a firearm and has 33  convictions for offences including a second assault on the same woman.

Prenderville, formerly of Rutland Avenue, was convicted by a jury at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court last December of assaulting the woman at Crumlin Road on October 2, 2011.

Judge McCartan said it was evident that Prenderville had contested the case on the basis that the victim would not have the courage to come to court to give evidence.

The victim was brought to court for the trial but did not give evidence. Her original statement to gardai was given in evidence to the jury instead using a legal provision for this purpose.

He noted that Prenderville had been in custody since September 2012 on the firearms charge and had also surrendered his bail on this charge. He said to give Prenderville credit for the time he spent in custody on both charges "would make a nonsense of the process.”

Judge McCartan said the offence was at the top end of the scale and imposed a five year sentence backdated to the conviction date of December 10, 2013.

Garda Valerie Kennedy told Roisin Lacey BL, prosecuting, that the victim had been out socialising when she bumped into Prenderville. The woman had broken off the relationship about three weeks earlier and was heavily pregnant at the time.

They spoke and as Prenderville was leaving he threw the keys of her car at her and told her where it was. She later went to collect the car with a friend. When Prenderville arrived he began shouting and she told him to go away.

Prenderville pulled her to the ground by her hair and began hitting and kicking her. She felt like the attack lasted 10 or 15 minutes. A person attempted to protect the woman's stomach area and Prenderville ran off.

He came back and asked for her phone before running off again.

The woman went to the Coombe Hospital but the baby was found to be unhurt and she was transferred to St James Hospital for treatment for facial bruising and a broken finger. She also suffered multiple patches of hair loss. She later went on to have a healthy baby.

Gda Kennedy agreed with Caroline Biggs SC, defending, that Prenderville's mother had died in tragic circumstances in 2007 and he came from a quite impoverished background.

Ms Biggs said her client had engaged with a psychiatrist while in custody and handed in two psychiatric reports on his behalf.

Prenderville said the sessions had helped him and noted his child as a motivating factor.

Ms Biggs said he had a history of drug addiction and asked Judge McCartan to take into account the time he had spent in custody as well as the progress he had made there.

< ends >

Online Editors

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News