Jail for man who attacked garda with golf club

A Dublin man who attacked a garda with a golf club will serve two months in jail for the assault and six burglaries.

Father-of-one Ian Daly (aged 32) received a three-year prison sentence with 34 months suspended after he was found guilty of assaulting Detective Garda David Connolly on April 26, 2010.

The garda had been attempting to catch Daly following reports of a burglary at an apartment building on Kiltipper Road in Tallaght earlier that day.

Daly of Cushlawn Park in Tallaght pleaded guilty to six counts of burglary and damaging property. He pleaded not guilty to assault and was convicted of the assault by a jury following a trial.

Passing sentence today at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court, Judge Carmel Stewart said the “entire country is mindful at the moment that gardaí are entitled to go about their work without fear of assault”.

During the trial Det Gda Connolly told prosecuting counsel Gerardine Small BL that he went to an apartment block on Kiltipper Road in Dublin 24 after getting a 999 call on 3.30am on the day in question.

Det Gda Connolly and his colleague Det Gda Austin Larkin saw a man with a rucksack on his back climbing over railings outside the apartment building. They also saw two toolboxes on the ground.

They ran up the road after the man, who stopped running when the guards were within 30 feet and said: “Come on you b***ards.”

Daly swung the golf-club at Garda Connolly who ducked the blow but took the force of the club on his wrist, causing the shaft of the club to break.

The accused continued to wave the remaining half-shaft in a stabbing motion as the gardaí used their batons to try and subdue him. He only stopped struggling when Garda Connolly threatened to use pepper spray.

Det Gda Connolly himself suffered swelling and soreness in his wrist, and his watch had been broken during the assault.

He said that a number of cars had been broken into at the apartment complex, and that not all of the property stolen had been recovered.

Daly has 54 previous convictions, including one for burglary. He was on bail when he carried out these crimes. At a previous hearing, Judge Stewart said he was on a “crime spree”.

Pieter Le Vert BL, defending, apologised to the garda on behalf of Daly. He said his client is illiterate and suffers from mental health issues but has been clean from drug-use since his arrest.

Judge Stewart took into account Daly's remorse, his attempts at rehabilitation and the fact that he is a father to a 3-year-old boy.

She sentenced him to three years in prison for assault, and three years for burglary, to run concurrently, taking into account all other charges.

Judge Stewart suspended all but the final two months of the three-year sentence. This will run consecutively to the sentence currently being served by Daly because Daly committed the offences while on bail.

She said that as Daly is due to be released from his current jail term this May, this new sentence means he can now expect to be freed in July.

Daly was also ordered to remain under the supervision of the probation services for three years following his release, to remain drug-free, and to attend any residential drug treatment programmes recommended for him.

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