A prisoner on the run from Shelton Abbey held a knife to a neighbour’s face at her front door and threatened to cut her eye out.
Luke Taylor was unlawfully at large from the sheltered prison eight months into a four-year sentence when he carried out the threats to kill and also caused criminal damage to the neighbour’s property, Detective Garda Paul Radley said.
Luke Taylor, 21, of 11 Cherry Lawn, Blackrock, Cork, carried out the offences at the family home in another part of the same estate at Cherry Lawn.
The first two charges state that he threatened a man and a woman causing them to believe that he would kill or cause them serious harm.
Taylor was charged with producing a knife during the making of these alleged threats. The last two charges accuse him of causing €250 worth of criminal damage to the front door at the woman’s house and €870 damage to the man’s car. He signed a plea of guilty to the charges.
Detective Garda Paul Radley said the injured party was home with her partner and children when Luke Taylor arrived at the front of the house shouting and roaring and she noticed that the wing mirror was missing from her partner’s car.
“The injured party’s partner came out and the defendant ran at him with a knife. Fortunately, he got into the house and managed to close the door. Luke Taylor continued to kick the door and he broke a panel in the door. He continued to threaten them before he left the scene,” Det Garda Radley said.
The detective said the woman said in her victim impact statement that after being threatened at knifepoint at her front door she had become a nervous wreck and had not slept properly since. She finds that the slightest noise now wakes her and the boarded-up damage to her door was a constant reminder of what happened.
Judge Brian O’Callaghan noted that Taylor was serving out the original sentence in Cork Prison and was due for release in April 2021. The judge imposed a total sentence of four years on Taylor.
This sentence commenced today, concurrent with what he was already serving, but substantially increasing the time Taylor will spend in custody.
The judge said the threats to kill while armed with a knife were particularly serious offences.
“Possession of a knife is the same as possession of a loaded gun. It is a weapon of harm. It is exactly the same as someone who arms themselves with a gun.
“To go to a neighbour and carry out this activity, this court finds absolutely appalling. It is immaterial what background circumstances were in place.
“In most places, we can rely on neighbours for comfort and support.
“You committed these offences when basically on the run from Shelton Abbey. You put this knife close to her face, saying 'I will take your eye out'. Fortunately, her partner arrived and put the door between you and them.
“Sadly, the court has not a huge expression of remorse from you to your neighbours and that is disappointing,” the judge said.
Dermot Sheehan, defence barrister said the accused was immature and that it was foolish of him to abscond from Shelton Abbey.
Taylor had 42 previous convictions for crimes including aggravated burglary.