Two jailed for roles in ‘a classic case of city thuggery’

“A classic case of city thuggery” was how a sentencing judge yesterday described the actions of two thieves.

Two men who were attacked and robbed in Cork city centre were terrified of being thrown into the river. Yesterday, two of the gang of four who attacked them were sentenced to three years’ imprisonment.

Kevin Kearney, formerly of 9A St Patrick’s Arch, off Gerald Griffin St, Cork, who later moved to Portlaoise, had 12 months of his sentence suspended.

Patrick Tobin, aged 23, of 8 Fanmore Crescent, Gooldshill, Mallow, Co Cork, had 18 months of his sentence suspended.

“It is a classic case of city thuggery,” said the sentencing judge. “They identified an innocent party, they attacked and rolled him. They then followed him from the bridge to Rutland St and turned him over again. Hours later, there was a repeat performance.”

Garda Anne O’Flynn testified that two of the victims found themselves standing by railings beside the river, fearing they were about to be thrown into the water.

The robberies were carried out at Rutland St and Grafton St in Cork on Jan 10, 2012.

Garda O’Flynn outlined the background to the two events.

The first incident occurred as a chef in his thirties was walking home from a night shift to his home on Barrack St, Cork.

As he crossed the footbridge from Morrisson’s Island to George’s Quay, he noticed four men on the bridge. He thought about turning back but he decided to walk across. As he passed the men, he was punched three times in the head.

He held on to the railing to stop himself falling. He ran away but was tripped and repeatedly kicked the victim in the ribs. €60 in cash was robbed from him on Rutland St and the four attackers left the scene.

Two hours later at Grafton St, a narrow lane between Oliver Plunkett St and South Mall, a student was asked if he wanted to go down the lane for a smoke with one man. Three others followed and they attacked the student.

He resisted but he was told he would be stabbed.

The student was robbed of a €300 phone, a €270 watch, and €15 in cash.


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