| 0.7°C Dublin

Schoolkids watch in horror as mum is attacked


Attacked mum Michelle Cahill

Attacked mum Michelle Cahill

Attacked mum Michelle Cahill

TERRIFIED schoolchildren watched in horror as a mum suffered a broken hand during a vicious attack.

The woman was set upon by another parent after allegations of teasing between children led to a row.

Christine Dewar (24) pulled her victim, Michelle Cahill, to the ground and rained down kicks and blows, breaking her victim's hand in the process.

Ms Dewar had been called to the scene by her 45-year-old mother Elizabeth Quinn, who believed that her (Quinn's) son was being mocked and called "midget" by other children.

Quinn, who is also a grandmother, and Dewar, a mother-of-one, both of Shangan Crescent, Ballymun, Dublin had pleaded not guilty to assault causing harm to Ms Cahill on the Ballymun Road on September 3, 2012.

A court heard Elizabeth Quinn (45) had accused the victim's 11-year-old boy of mocking her son's height. She then called her daughter Christine Dewar to come and "sort her out".

Both mother and daughter were found guilty of assault; Dewar by carrying out the attack on Ms Cahill and Quinn by directing her daughter to commit the crime.



Quinn said her son had been subjected to bullying in and out of school by other children.

She also denied inviting her daughter to assault Ms Cahill, while Dewar's defence maintained the victim had struck first and injured her hand when the two women fell to the ground in a struggle.

Judge Catherine Murphy said she would leave both accused without criminal records if they made a €500 charity donation.

Dublin District Court heard the group of children were being walked home by their parents on the first day back at school after summer.

Ms Cahill said she was walking her three children, aged 7, 10 and 11, home when her eldest son had "banter" with other children about who the tallest in the class was.

Quinn approached Ms Cahill's son, began verbally abusing him and said: "Are you calling my son a midget?".

Ms Cahill approached and a heated argument ensued in which Quinn called Ms Cahill a "black bitch", it was claimed.

Ms Cahill told her to "f*** off" and Quinn replied: "I'll get you sorted". The accused then made a call, telling her daughter: "Get your a**e down here, this black bitch is giving me loads of abuse, the court heard.

"(Quinn) put her face up to mine and said 'come on love, you and I, here and now'," Ms Cahill said.

Dewar arrived in a car, got out screaming and jumped on Ms Cahill, who went into a foetal position to protect herself as her children looked on, crying

Dewar pulled her to the ground by the hair and Ms Cahill fell on her hand, fracturing a bone in it. She felt around nine blows to her head and body before Dewar was pulled off.

Before she left the scene, Dewar said: "f**k off back to your country, you black bitch".

Quinn insisted she only called her daughter to come and get the children because there was "a bit of trouble". She denied racially abusing the victim.

Dewar said in evidence her only intention was to collect her little brother and sister but she saw the argument and asked what was going on.