Man jailed for violent sexual attack on his then partner

Accused held woman by the hair and punched her as he lay naked on top of her

Justice Michael White said the victim impact statement was “exceptional” in this case and that the victim is a “very kind and forgiving person”.

Justice Michael White said the victim impact statement was “exceptional” in this case and that the victim is a “very kind and forgiving person”.

 

A man who attacked and sexually assaulted his then partner after returning home drunk has been jailed for 15 months.

The man (64), who cannot be named to protect the identity of the victim, grabbed his then partner by the hair with one hand while he punched her with his other as he lay naked on top of her during the ordeal.

The man, with an address in Co Mayo, pleaded guilty at the Central Criminal Court to aggravated sexual assault at his address on December 14th, 2018. He has two previous convictions for drink driving.

A local detective told Patrick Reynolds BL, prosecuting, that the accused man and the victim had been in a relationship for a number of years and had recently returned from a holiday at the time of the incident.

The detective said the woman arrived home from work early to find the man and a friend of his drinking in their home. The woman told her partner she wanted his friend gone when she returned from the shop, but the friend did not leave until an hour after she got back.

During dinner the accused threw a loaf of bread and a pineapple at the victim, though neither struck her. He then went to a nearby hotel in order to continue drinking and the victim went to bed.

She woke later that night when the man entered the room and began verbally abusing her. He lay on top of her and took off his clothes while the woman told him she did not want to have sex.

After she said ‘no’ he became angry and began punching her with one hand while his other hand held her by the hair. The man tore her nightdress leaving her naked and touched her breast and her vagina, but was unable to get an erection.

He eventually let the woman go, who was covered in blood, and she went to the bathroom where she contacted a friend who in turn contacted gardaí. The man was arrested and made full admissions in interview with gardaí, telling them that whatever the victim said was true.

The court heard the woman sustained abrasions and bruises to her body and face during the assault and that hair was pulled from her scalp.

In her victim impact statement, which was read before the court by counsel, the woman said this had “all happened because of alcohol” and that the man would not have done it sober.

The woman said it was “painful” this had happened because they had planned to get married and stay together for the rest of their lives. She said a lot of time had now passed and that she had recovered from the incident. She said she forgave the accused man.

The detective agreed with Paul Flannery SC, defending, that his client had suffered from heart problems and had been unemployed for a number of years prior to the incident. He agreed the accused expressed “total remorse” for what he had done.

Mr Flannery said his client came to Ireland from abroad in 2004 and had worked all the time up until 2015 when he damaged his shoulder in an accident. He said his client had three children from a previous relationship and had been married, but went through a divorce in 2008.

Counsel said the violence was primarily a result of the drinking and his client behaving wrongly. He said his client has not gone near the victim since.

Mr Flannery said his client was hospitalised in December 2020 and has been diagnosed with prostate cancer. He submitted that his client was “unlikely” to commit this type of offence again.

Justice Michael White said the victim impact statement was “exceptional” in this case and that the victim is a “very kind and forgiving person”.

Justice White said that while alcohol consumption was not a mitigating factor, the victim has described a “kind, clever and good man” who has been “destroyed” by the abuse of alcohol. He said mitigating circumstances included the man’s guilty plea and his admissions.

He said that by reason of the mitigating factors and the description in the victim impact statement, the court would impose a sentence of two years imprisonment with the final nine months suspended.