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Neighbour's brutal attack on woman

A FATHER viciously attacked his next door neighbour in her back garden while her elderly father was inside, a court heard.

During the unprovoked assault, Thomas Finn (20) repeatedly punched the woman until she lost conciseness and then started kicking her as she lay on the ground.

When the dad-of-one was arrested he told gardai he was going to burn her house down.

Judge Martin Nolan remanded Finn in custody for two weeks while he considers a sentence. The judge said the only things saving him from a very long sentence were his clean criminal record and belated expression of remorse.

Finn, of Berryfield Road, Finglas, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assault causing harm to his neighbour Anthea Guerin on May 31, 2011, and to threatening to burn down her house on June 8, 2011.

Garda Aidan O'Reilly told the court that Ms Guerin was with her father in their home when she heard shouting outside. She looked out to see Finn arguing with his parents. Finn told her to go back inside and she returned to her father.


A short time later she heard a tapping coming from outside and went out to see Finn and another man in her back garden. Finn shouted at her: "Who do you think you are poking your nose into my business?"

When she told him to get out of her garden he attacked her and started punching her in the face. She fell to the ground and he kicked her in the body and face until she blacked out.

When she came to 20 seconds later she heard the other man say that they'd done enough and should go. Finn responded "no she's grand" before running back towards her and kicking her again.

The men fled and the woman was taken to hospital by ambulance. She had severe bruising and one eye was completely swollen over. She has since made a full physical recovery.

Finn was arrested at his home a week later. He denied the assault and repeatedly told the gardai that he was going to burn down Ms Guerin's house.

John Fitzgerald, for Finn, said that his client was a heavy user of the banned headshop drug Snow Blow at the time and was arguing about this with his parents when Ms Guerin saw them outside her window.