Taxi driver 'may know' thug who repeatedly punched teenage girl on return from night out
A taxi driver who may be able to identify the man who viciously assaulted a young woman has come forward.
Student Shanan Reid McDaid was hospitalised after she was attacked by a stranger while waiting to get a cab home after a night out in Letterkenny.
The 18-year-old was left with severe facial injuries from being repeatedly punched early on Sunday morning.
The attack happened at the Market Square at around 3am as Shanan's friends walked ahead of her.
The thug first called her "b****" and "s***" and as she turned round, he attacked her.
Shanan said she feared she could have died during the horrific beating.
The unknown assailant fled, leaving her battered and bleeding from the nose with cuts to her head.
Now, a taxi driver has come forward to say he may know the identity of her attacker.
The driver confirmed he picked up a fare at the same time the Galway University student was set upon and confirmed he fitted the description given by Shanan.
He also said that the man was in an agitated state when he got into his taxi. The driver was yesterday due to call at Letterkenny Garda Station to pass on the details of the event and other information to gardai.
Shanan yesterday said she is hopeful that the breakthrough may lead to the arrest of the person responsible for her terrifying ordeal.
"I know the taxi driver is going to speak to gardai and hopefully this person will be interviewed," she said.
"I can't say a lot more than that, but I really do want the person who done this to me brought to justice.
"I wouldn't like to think that he is simply walking the streets and can do this again."
Shanan, from Illistrin in Letterkenny, Co Donegal, again appealed to young women not to walk home alone when out.
"I didn't think this could or would happen to me and yet it did," she said. "I would just ask young women to be so aware and to keep their wits about them at all times.
"I know it should never happen, but it is not safe out there for women to walk home alone."
Yesterday, Shanan was receiving further treatment for her injuries at a specialist unit at Sligo General Hospital.
A garda spokesman at Letterkenny confirmed it had received a complaint about the attack.
Gardai are reviewing CCTV footage from the area and the spokesman added that a full investigation into the incident is currently under way but no arrests have yet been made.