Tuesday 20 March 2018

Teenager to remain in care of HSE following defilement of a child

Emer Connolly

A judge has ordered that a teenager with intellectual disabilities who defiled a young child should remain in the care of the HSE.

The teenager admitted engaging in a sexual act with a child and told the victim he would get a “few thumps” if he told anyone.

The now 16-year-old pleaded guilty to the defilement of his young victim, at an address in Co Laois, between January 1, 2009 and September 30, 2010.

The Central Criminal Court heard that at the time, the accused was aged between 12 and 13 and the victim was aged between nine and 10.

Prosecuting counsel Pauline Walley SC told Mr Justice Paul Carney that the accused is now in the care of the HSE and added: “You know and I know once he is 18 the HSE will say that comes to an end.”

She said that the accused requires “all the supports that can be put in place”.

Defence Counsel Eanna Mulloy SC, said that his client has made progress in the residential unit.

Mr Justice Carney said: “This court has absolutely no expertise dealing with what I've been faced with here. . .This court has a total lack of expertise.”

He directed that the boy's present treatment continue and that he remain at the centre. He ordered that the case be re-listed in court before he reaches his 18th birthday, with liberty to re-apply at any time.

Mr Justice Carney said the case should be brought back before the court if funding is cut off. He also directed that the accused does not contact the victim and adjourned the case until November 2014.

Detective Garda Owen Maher told Ms Walley SC that the accused lived near relatives of the victim and his mother and the victim's mother were friends.

The accused would invite the victim into his house to play on the X-box in his bedroom upstairs, the court was told.

Gda Maher said that he would sometimes touch the victim's bottom and penis and put his “willy” into the victim's private parts.

The young boy told a relative about what happened and social services were contacted.

Ms Walley said the substance of the allegations was that there was anal penetration between 10 and 15 times over a period of a year and nine months.

The victim was told by the accused if he told anyone, he would get a “few thumps”, said counsel.

The accused co-operated with gardaí. He did not accept that he had threatened the boy and said he would not have hurt him.

The court heard that the defendant has had difficulties in his life. Gda Maher said he engaged with older youths in his area, who weren't a good influence on him.

He said that he has been in the care of the HSE since 2011. He is currently in a residential unit for young people with intellectual disabilities and is under full-time supervision.

The court heard that he received three cautions under the Garda Youth Diversion programme in the past, but that he has no previous convictions.

The victim's uncle read a statement from the boy to the court saying that he had been friends with the accused and that what happened made him feel “sad and scared”.

The statement said the accused would lock the door when they were in the bedroom and he told him “if I told anyone I would get hurt”. He said he gets nightmares about the accused chasing him.

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