Prison officer told wife he would kill her

A prison officer was jailed yesterday for threatening to kill his wife, saying: “If I can’t have you, nobody can.”

Greg Lynch had put on surgical latex gloves, snapped them repeatedly at his wrists, and warned Leanne Lynch: “Do you know what is going to happen tonight? I am going to kill you.”

Lynch, aged 40, with an address at Foxborough Rise, Lucan, Dublin, was sentenced to five years in jail. The last three and a half years were suspended on the charge of threatening to kill Ms Lynch at her Co Cork home at about 10.30pm on May 3 last year.

At the time, Ms Lynch had a barring order against her husband.

He had been a prison officer at Mountjoy Prison for five years.

Judge Séan Ó Donnabháin said a condition of the suspended part of the sentence was Lynch was not to go within five miles of his wife for a period of five years after his release from prison.

Garda Declan Lynch, who responded to a call to the scene, found neighbours at the house who said they would not leave until gardaí arrived.

“He threatened to kill Leanne,” the garda told Cork Circuit Criminal Court.

“He had surgical gloves, latex gloves he would be able to get through work. He demanded her phone.

“He said: ‘Do you know what is going to happen tonight? I am going to kill you. You have broken me. I am sorry. Get the keys [of the car]. You won’t see past 12 o’clock tonight. I have nothing to lose.’ He said that several times.

“He was snapping the latex gloves. He had another four or five pairs of gloves in his pocket and a phone belonging to Leanne Lynch.

“In the early hours of the morning, the area was searched. A bag was recovered. In the bag were numerous latex gloves, cans of beer, and his phone, switched off.

“It was apparent he had been camping out nearby and had been watching the house.

“In the past, he worked as a taxi driver and he became a prison officer in Dublin, in Mountjoy.

“Everything changed and it had a knock-on effect in his life.”

In her victim statement, Ms Lynch said: “I had a barring order against Greg Lynch. He came into my home uninvited. I had not seen or spoken to him for over a year prior to this.

“He said if he could not have me nobody could. He said he was watching me and had other people watching me.”

Referring to newspaper coverage of her husband being arrested and charged with threatening to kill her, she said she felt traumatised that a story about her personal life had become news to the public and she felt violated all over again.

“The possibility that I could have died haunts me every day,” she said. “I do not forgive Greg, I will never forget the ordeal... He has done untold damage. On this night I was truly terrified.”

Donal O’Sullivan, defending, said the defendant would lose his job as a consequence of the conviction and that, for a man of his occupation, serving a sentence would have a very severe impact as he would have to serve it in protected conditions for the entire time.

He said alcohol could have clouded Lynch’s judgement on the night and he did not seem to accept the marriage was over at that time.

Judge Ó Donnabháin

referred to the devastating effect the crime had on Ms Lynch. He also took into consideration the difficulties a prison officer would face serving time in jail .

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