A former Tipperary hurler who left hospital in Cork on crutches was beaten mercilessly by a Mallow man in a psychotic episode. The attacker was jailed today for five years.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin imposed a sentence of seven years, with the last two years suspended, on Adam Sheehan, of 113 Seamus Murphy Place, Mallow, Co Cork. He pleaded guilty to robbery from 47-year-old Seamus Troy at Railway St, Cork City, on July 20.
“It was a mindless attack, without compassion, necessity, or purpose,” the judge said.
Mr Troy had just been released from hospital on crutches. Sheehan beat him across the head and neck with one of his crutches until he broke the crutch. He then knelt on the victim’s neck and demanded the PIN for his bank card.
Mr Troy won All-Ireland medals with Tipperary in 1989 and 1991, respectively, at minor and U21 level.
Mr Troy said: “The accused approached me asking for money and I replied that I am only out of hospital and heading home.
"He grabbed my bag from the crutches and ran. I rang 999.
"Before I knew it, he had knocked me to the ground. He grabbed one of my crutches and hit me across the face and my head repeatedly. He also hit me across the back. He just kept hitting me. I could feel the blood running down my head and face.
“He kneeled down on top of me. He then slipped something into my mouth and put his knee on my neck," Mr Troy said.
“I have lost my motivation to do everything. I have never met or seen this man who assaulted me. I have tried to get help but nothing great has happened so far, but hopefully soon.
"I would like to thank the man who came to my aid. I feel like he saved my life. Only for him I would be dead,” Mr Troy said.
Garda Paraic White, who investigated the case, said Sheehan had previous convictions, including counts for burglary, arson, and carrying knives.
Peter O’Flynn, defence barrister, referred to headshop drugs being blamed for an upsurge in teenage violence. Mr O’Flynn said: “This drug, 'spice', can turn someone into a psychopath.
“He has long-term alcohol problems. Having smoked this substance this is what happened.”
Judge Ó Donnabháin agreed it was psychotic to strike the victim with his own crutch on his release from hospital but said it was not excused in any way by drug-taking.