'Habitual criminal' gets five years for unprovoked knife attack in Limerick


A man who stabbed another in the neck in a “savage and unprovoked attack” in Limerick has been jailed for five years. Described by gardaí as a “habitual criminal”, Gary Whelan (25), Upper Cecil Street, Limerick, was on bail for burglary offences when he stabbed Raymond Constable (25) on Parnell Street in October last year.

Limerick Circuit Court heard yesterday that Mr Constable had to be resuscitated in hospital following the attack. Whelan pleaded guilty to the assault. He also pleaded guilty to two burglary charges at a house in Sir Harry’s Mall and at another address at Janemount Park, Corbally, in January 2011.

Following his arrest, Whelan admitted “sticking a knife “ into Mr Constable but said he carried a knife for his own protection.

Det Garda Pádraig O’Dwyer said Mr Constable lost a significant amount of blood but he had since made a full recovery.

John O’Sullivan, prosecuting, described the incident as a “savage and unprovoked attack with a knife”.

Judge Carroll Moran said Whelan could have killed Mr Constable and then he would be facing a murder or manslaughter charge. He said the matter was of the “gravest seriousness” and described the fact that Whelan was on bail at the time of the stabbing as a further aggravating factor.

Judge Moran sentenced him to five years on both the burglary and assault charges.