Sunday 9 December 2018

Two 'highly intoxicated' and blood-splattered brothers kicked, punched and spat at patrol car, court hears

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court (Stock photo)
Dublin Circuit Criminal Court (Stock photo)

Fiona Ferguson

Two “highly intoxicated” and blood-spattered brothers kicked, punched and spat at a patrol car with two gardai inside, a court has heard.

Sam (22) and Craig (20) Mooney threatened the gardaí that they would “kick their heads in.” The brothers then undressed “entirely” while the two gardaí were waiting for reinforcements.

Sam and Craig Mooney, of Broadford Walk, Ballinteer, Dublin pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to criminal damage to a garda patrol car at Broadford Walk on January 17, 2016.

Craig Mooney is currently serving a two and a half year prison sentence imposed earlier this year for arson of a car in November 2016. He had been due for release in October this year.

At an earlier sentence hearing, Judge Karen O'Connor imposed a one year suspended sentence on Craig Mooney consecutive to his current term. She suspended the sentence for 18 months and ordered probation supervision for that time.

Today she imposed a 14 month prison sentence on Sam Mooney, which she suspended in full for 15 months.

She noted Sam Mooney's “horrendous intoxication” on the night and said this offered no excuse for his behaviour.

Earlier, she told the brothers that their actions had been “absolutely disgraceful” and said gardaí should not have to endure such behaviour in the course of their duty.

Garda Rachel Kiernan told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that she and a colleague had responded to an incident on a Sunday morning at about 11.25am. She said they spotted blood on the road and followed the trail up the driveway of one of the houses.

Gda Kiernan said Sam and Craig Mooney ran out of the house towards them. They were shouting at the gardaí in abusive language to leave and threatened them: “We will kick your heads in.”

She said both men, who were extremely irate and had blood spatters on their clothing, continued to verbally abuse them. The gardaí got back inside the patrol car and the two men began to punch and kick the car for a number of minutes. The brothers also spat on the windscreen.

Gda Kiernan said they were so concerned at the behaviour they moved away from the immediate vicinity and called for assistance. She said both men undressed “entirely” and stood in the road shouting and moving towards the gardaí.

When their colleagues arrived, Sam Mooney ran into the front door of the house while Craig went around the side and threw a flower pot at pursing gardaí. Both men were arrested.

Sam has four previous convictions including affray and threatening and abusive behaviour. Craig has 11 previous convictions including arson, affray, obstruction, theft and criminal damage.

Gda Kiernan agreed with Justin McQuade BL, defending Craig Mooney, that there had been no physical damage to the patrol car. She agreed it had to be washed at a cost of €10 to €25 to the State.

She agreed with Seoirse O Dunlaing BL, defending Sam Mooney, that it was noticeable that his client was “highly intoxicated.”

Mr McQuade said Craig came from a decent hard working family who were supportive of him. He said Craig had lost his eye in an accident as a young child and has a prosthetic replacement.

He said Craig had a number of behavioural issues as a young person and suffers with ADHD.

Counsel said this “bizarre and unusual offending behaviour” could only be explained by intoxication. He said Craig was using his time in custody productively and was on an enhanced regime. He has his name down for a relapse prevention program and is due for release in late 2018.

Mr O Dunlaing said Sam had instructed him to apologise for his behaviour. He said a factor in the case was “horrendous intoxication” and his client realised this was a issue he had to address.

He said Sam had since left the family home for a number of months in order to detoxify himself from tablets. He said that in August, Sam was the victim of an assault and spent two weeks in an induced coma. He is hoping to return to work with his father on recovery from his head injury.

Mr O Dunlaing said Sam accepted “he has one foot in the door of Mountjoy prison” but asked the court not to impose a custodial sentence.

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