Uncle threatened to kill me if I told of assault, girl tells court

A girl aged 10 who said she was sexually assaulted by her uncle in Kerry said much later that he threatened to kill her if she told anyone.

Cork Circuit Criminal Court

This evidence was put before Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin and a jury at Cork Circuit Criminal Court yesterday.

The middle-aged man who is on trial pleaded not guilty to four counts of sexually assaulting her on occasions between April 2011 and September 2014 at his home in Kerry.

The complainant gave evidence to specialist gardaí who recorded the interviews and these recordings were played for the jury yesterday.

In them she said, “My uncle [name] got into bed with me and got on top of me and he started moving… He started moving up and down. He did have his boxers on. He was in the centre of my back. No one else was there.

“I think they [the boxer short]) were browny black.”

She said she was wearing a pink hoody and that the defendant was on top of her for about a minute.

“I did scream. I kicked him with my heel. When he got off me he said don’t tell anybody. He walked normally downstairs.

“It felt weird on my back, like a rock or something. He started mumbling, he said, don’t tell anyone.”

In relation to another alleged assault, she said: “I was sitting down watching telly and he put his hand up my top… I was wearing my white polo shirt… Up around my breast, he was moving his hand in a circle. I said, stop. I stopped his hand. He said, let go and I will take my hand away.”

In her third interview, some 14 months after the first interview, she said the defendant said to her: “If you tell anyone I will kill you.”

Ciarán O’Loughlin, defence senior counsel, cross-examined the complainant, now aged 13, by video link. He said she only mentioned the alleged threat to kill in her last interview and had changed her story a number of times.

“How often have you changed the story at this stage?” he asked. She replied: “I am not sure.”

Mr O’Loughlin said she had accused her uncle of all the things her mother told her not to allow a man to do to her. He suggested that her mother was trying to get her to refer to these matters when making the complaint about her uncle. The girl replied that she did not understand. The case goes into its third day on Monday.

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