By Anne Lucey
A 27-year-old man who was a carer for his grandfather was so badly beaten around the head and face his mother did not recognise him, the Circuit Criminal Court in Tralee heard yesterday.
The baseball bat which is believed to have been used to beat Eamon Sheehy, at St Stephen’s Park, Castleisland, Co Kerry, in the early hours of January 14 was never recovered.
After a four-week trial in July, Sean Lane, aged 25, of An Caislean Mor, Castleisland, was unanimously found guilty of assault causing serious harm to Mr Sheehy and he was also found guilty of producing a weapon.
A second man, Jason Broderick, also known as Jason Keane-Broderick, aged 21, of St John’s Park, Castleisland, was found guilty of possession of an article capable of causing intimidation or injury, arising from the same incident.
When arrested, Lane told gardaí Mr Sheehy had come after him with a golf club and he had had to protect himself. There had been “difficulties “between Lane and Mr Sheehy regarding “some female”, Sgt Henderson agreed with Blaise Carroll, defending Lane, at the hearing yesterday.
Marguerite Sheehy read a victim impact statement in which she said that she only recognised her son from a tattoo and his whole body was “purple”.
Delivering the victim impact statement, “today I will be his voice”, Ms Sheehy said. When she saw her son in hospital, “his whole body was a deep shade of purple from bruising”.
“Blood oozed from his ears and his face was unrecognisable but I knew it was Eamon when I saw his beloved tattoo of the Lover bird on his right forearm,” she said.
Her son had been a full-time carer for her father, who had MS, and while in hospital worried about his grandfather, who has since passed away.
He had gone from being full of life to
The life of handsome, energetic, full of life had been replaced with “a dull, depressing existence with life-changing injuries through no fault of his own,” she said.
His sight is affected, walking unaided is dangerous. He needs assistance for everyday tasks and suffers excruciating headaches.
“He feels like a prisoner in his own body and often says he has been given a life sentence. As a mother, I worry about his future and how all of this will affect him long-term physically and mentally.
“Eamon was a beautiful miracle the day I first held him in my arms nearly 28 years ago and he continues to be that miracle and blessing in our lives. We as a family thank God for sparing Eamon’s life.”
The DPP’s view was the appropriate sentence fell in the uppermost range of the scale for section four assaults of seven-and-a-half, to 12-and-a-half years and given the nature of the injuries a sentence in excess of this range may be merited, Roisin Lacey, prosecuting, told Judge Thomas E O Donnell. Judge O’Donnell adjourned the matter to January 14 for submissions from the defence. Finalisation will be on February 11, 2019.