Conviction of Garda sergeant for sex assault on colleague upheld

Sgt Martin Woods fined €1,000

 Garda Sergeant Martin Woods leaving court yesterday. Photograph: Collins Court

Garda Sergeant Martin Woods leaving court yesterday. Photograph: Collins Court

 

A Garda sergeant has been fined €1,000 after an appeal court upheld his conviction for sexually assaulting a female colleague while on duty at a Dublin station three years ago.

Sgt Martin Woods (50), a father of two, was convicted at Dublin District Court last year and got two fines of €1,000 in relation to two counts of sexually assaulting the young woman while on duty at a station on dates in March and June 2010.

Woods, who had pleaded not guilty, brought an appeal to the Dublin Circuit Court aimed at having both convictions overturned. He succeeded on one count only where it was alleged he touched the officer’s breast while telling her “wake up there” in June 2010.

Following the two-day appeal, Judge Sarah Berkeley yesterday found him guilty of the second charge, which related to an incident in March 2010.

The court heard he pushed his pelvic region against the woman’s behind, grabbed her hips and began gyrating while saying: “She likes it this way.”

Woods’s barrister pleaded with the court not to impose a harsher sentence, saying the conviction will have drastic implications for his career and his future.

The judge allowed Woods extra time, four months, to pay the fine.