Man who drove car while garda held on to window jailed

Judge says Garda John Walsh lucky not to have been killed in Co Sligo incident

A man who drove at speed while a Garda was clinging onto the open window of his car has been sentenced to three and a half years in prison.

Tommy Corcoran (22), of Ard an Mara, Cartron Point, Sligo, pleaded guilty to endangerment and to possession of cannabis for the purpose of supply on April 19th, 2013.

Judge Keenan Johnson, who suspended the final two years of the sentence, said it was lucky that the Garda John Walsh had not been killed or had not suffered life changing injuries, because of the actions of the accused.

The judge told Sligo Circuit Court that society depended on gardaí to maintain law and order and the court had to send out a clear message that people who endanger gardaí "must suffer a severe penalty.

At an earlier hearing the court heard Garda Walsh, who has since become a sergeant, felt his life was in danger and pleaded with the driver to stop.

The incident happened when gardaí travelled in two patrol cars to the defendant’s home with a search warrant, and saw him driving out of the driveway.

After being told he was to be searched, he reversed at speed and Garda Walsh who was flung onto the bonnet grabbed the open driver’s window.

He suspended the final two years of the sentence subject to a number of conditions including a requirement that the defendant provide urine samples to the probation service when required to make sure he remained drugs free.

The supply charge was taken into consideration