Six years for sex assault on girl, 16

A six-year jail term was imposed on a 21-year-old man who sexually assaulted a 16-year-old girl in a car, parked in a field, and then dumped her on the side of the road in a state of undress.

Judge Gerard O’Brien said the accused had “limited appreciation of the seriousness of events until very late in the day”.

The judge said: “He showed no remorse of substance until very late in the day.

“He has no insight into the effect on the victim.”

As for the victim, Judge O’Brien said she has experienced sleepless nights, breakdowns, nightmares, a fear of leaving home, and remained extremely traumatised.

The judge said the higher courts had allowed for the fact that the cultural background of the accused could mitigate certain offences but not so with reference to crimes such as deliberate sexual violence.

Alice Fawsett, defending, said the accused had gathered €10,000 to compensate the victim, and had spent the past month in custody on the charge.

She said: “I am instructed to say he is very sorry for what happened to her.”

Detective Garda Caroline Keogh had previously testified at Cork Circuit Criminal Court the 16-year-old Cork girl became hysterical after she was dragged unconscious in a state of undress from a car after the sex attack and left on the side of the street.

The accused, now aged 21, pleaded guilty to a charge of sexually assaulting the 16-year-old girl when he was aged 19.

Detective Garda Keogh outlined the background to the attack which occurred on April 29, 2014.

The victim was the former girlfriend of the accused at the time of the crime, but they had arranged to meet and go for a spin in his car.

There was a second man in the car also.

They drove around from lunchtime on that date into the afternoon, travelling out to a garage a few miles outside Cork City and back again.

She went home for her tea, and they arranged by text for her to go out again in the car at 6pm.

The accused picked her up. “They again drove around and went back out to the garage and down a laneway,” Det Keogh said.

“They pulled into a field. (The accused) got out of the car and got a coke bottle with alcohol and got into the back of the car with (the injured party).

“He told her to drink the bottle or he would kill her or he would leave her there and drive back,” the detective said.

The then 19-year-old man sexually assaulted the 16-year-old when she was extremely drunk.

She was unable to stay awake and she was getting sick.

He took off her clothes except for her top and he took off his clothes except for his shirt.

“He tried to have sex with her. She kept falling over.

“She was extremely intoxicated.

“He tried on numerous occasions to have sex with her. She passed out. The other male in the car also sexually assaulted her,” Det Garda Keogh said.

The second male had since fled and gardaí had been unable to locate him, the court heard.

“They drove to a couple of other locations in Cork.

“At around 8pm, he pulled her out of the car on to the footpath (not far from where she lives). She was unconscious.

“He took her shoes and various items of her clothing and threw them on top of her,” the officer said.

A number of people soon came to the assistance of the victim who regained consciousness and became hysterical.

The defendant’s car was clearly identified on CCTV and he was later identified.

He admitted in the course of interview that he tried to have sex with her but denied forcing her.

Consent could not arise as an issue in legal terms as the victim was deemed to be a child at 16.

She had been in a relationship for a short period previous to this incident.

The injured party prepared a victim impact statement to be handed to the judge, but she did not want it read out in court.

Ms Fawsett said there was drink present but the accused did not bring the alcohol, and he was not the one who gave the victim the drink.


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