Sunday 18 March 2018

Mum of teen held over multiple stabbing fears he was drugged

Elaine Keogh, Colin Gleeson and Michael McHale

THE mother of a boy charged in connection with the stabbing of seven people at the weekend pleaded with gardai for a blood test to be carried out to see if he had been drugged.

The 17-year-old was last night held in a juvenile detention centre after coming before a special court hearing in relation to the incident, which happened in Drogheda, Co Louth, in the early hours of Saturday morning.

Dundalk District Court heard that his mother had asked for a doctor to take a blood sample from him because she did not believe he had just alcohol in his system when the incident took place.

"I asked for a blood sample, I didn't believe there was just alcohol in his system," she told Judge Flann Brennan.

It is expected the accused will undergo a medical assessment today.

The boy, who cannot be named because of his age, had been arrested and questioned by gardai in relation to the stabbings, which took place between West Street and Peter Street in the town. Of the seven people attacked, aged between 16 and 23, three remained in hospital last night, with one in intensive care.


Yesterday the accused faced charges of assault causing harm to brothers Patrick (20) and Mark Nutley (20), from Highlands, Drogheda, and Stephen Floody (18), from Roseville, in Drogheda town.

Garda Raymond Barry, of Drogheda garda station, who arrested the accused, told Judge Brennan that more serious charges may be brought.

He is also charged with producing a two-blade folding knife during the course of committing a crime.

Last night the family of the boy most seriously injured in the stabbing appealed for privacy as he continued his battle for survival following the attack. The 16-year-old victim has been sent to the intensive care unit of Dublin's Mater Hospital. "We don't want to say anything -- we just want to be left alone now at this difficult time," a family member said.

The sister of Stephen Floody said her brother was in a comfortable condition after the incident, and briefly returned to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda for a check-up yesterday afternoon after being released on Saturday night.

Another victim was named locally as Peter McCormick (19), from Beabeg Road. Meanwhile, Patrick Nutley was last night recovering from surgery to treat his injuries.

Local Fianna Fail councillor Tommy Byrne yesterday called for more gardai to be "on-the-beat" in the town's streets in the wake of the incident.

"The old-style tradition of having gardai on the streets between 8pm and 4am, particularly at the weekends, that would make a big difference," he said.

At the special hearing yesterday, gardai objected to the accused being granted bail and said it was alleged the youth was armed with a 4-5 inch blade at the time and he had attempted to flee the scene after the incident.

Counsel for the accused said that if granted bail the youth would reside away from Drogheda at a given address, sign on daily at a garda station and surrender his passport.

Judge Brennan said he was not satisfied he should release the youth. He remanded him in custody to St Patrick's Institution and adjourned the case to the Children's Court in Dublin on Thursday.

Irish Independent

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