A 73-year-old man was convicted yesterday of indecently assaulting his teenage daughter over 31 years ago on a big night of the TV series Glenroe — the marriage of Biddy and Miley.
He was convicted despite evidence that the complainant had tried to blackmail him to pay her cash to buy a house in 2005 or she would make a complaint to gardaí about the historical indecent assault allegation.
After almost three hours of evidence at Cork District Court yesterday, Judge Aingeal Ní Chondúin convicted the accused on the charge. Sentencing was put back for a week.
There was some confusion about the precise date on which the Glenroe episode aired in February 1986. The complainant said she was 16 at the time. Frank Buttimer, defending, said that in February 1986, the complainant was 14. The complainant said: “I am going by memory. I was not concentrating on the age. I am going by the memory and it was not a very nice memory.”
She said she remembered the night of the indecent assault by reference to the marriage of the Glenroe characters, Biddy and Miley.
“My father was sitting in his chair. He was drinking. He had whiskey. I sat down at the base of the chair. Glenroe started to come on. He started rubbing the back of my neck. After five minutes he put his hand under my bra and held my breast. He did not let go. I froze,” she said.
The man testified that he had never been in trouble in his life and said of the allegation: “I am horrified actually. Totally shocked.”
“I had a couple of drinks. I was dozing in the chair. I heard her say something. I did not hear what she said so I leant forward. As I leant forward I draped my right arm around her front to hear what she had said. I leant back in the seat and went back to sleep.”
The man alleged that in 2005 his daughter arrived at his front door to blackmail him.
The victim said she went to her father for help and he was nasty to her. “In my haste I threatened him,” she said. “I apologised to him afterwards.”
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