Man convicted of assault of teenager on bus made ‘hugely racist comments’

Dubliner fined €500 over assault on one of Ireland’s best underage sportswomen

Photograph: Alan Betson / THE IRISH TIMES

Photograph: Alan Betson / THE IRISH TIMES

 

A judge stated today that a Dubliner made “hugely racist comments” when racially abusing and punching one of Ireland’s best underage sportswomen on the chest on a bus.

At Ennis District Court, Judge Patrick Durcan stated that Padraig Delaney (39) made “hugely racist comments and hugely insulting and demeaning comments” towards the teenager on October 3rd, 2018.

The girl, aged 15 at the time of the assault, represents Ireland in team and individual sports and was returning home by bus in October 2018 from a sports event when assaulted by father of three, Padraig Delaney of Glenhill Road, Finglas, Dublin 11.

The content of Mr Delaney’s racist slur to the teen wasn’t revealed in open court, but Judge Durcan told Mr Delaney “what you said was terrible and hurtful and a breach of the law in its own right and in this court we don’t tolerate”.

Judge Durcan told Mr Delaney he needed to understand and realise that everyone is equal despite people being of different colour and different characteristics.

Judge Durcan ordered that Mr Delaney to stand up to hear him read out the content of the teenager’s victim impact statement.

In the statement, the secondary school student now aged 17 said that Mr Delaney told her on the bus at Bunratty “I should be shot like the rest of us making a shooting gesture with his hands. He then made a racist comment and I asked him ‘What did you say?’ and he then hit me.”

The teen, who cannot be named by order of Judge Duncan, stated “after he hit me a young man saw what he had done and attacked him”.

In her victim impact statement, the girl said that as a result of the attack “I have been hesitant to use public transport and this has put tremendous pressure on my parents to bring me everywhere I have to go for training matches and competitions for the multiple sports I participate in.”

Giving an outline of the facts, Sgt Aiden Lonergan said that Mr Delaney was drunk and kept putting his feet on the teenage girl’s lap on the bus and she repeatedly pushed his feet off her lap.

Sgt Lonergan said that Mr Delaney racially abused the girl with a comment and punched her in the chest at Bunratty.

Mr Delaney pleaded guilty to the assault of the girl on the date.

Mr Delaney had €1,000 compensation in court for the teenager today and Judge Durcan convicted him of assault and also fined him €500.

Judge Durcan told Mr Delaney: “I do know that when this happened you were severely under the influence of an intoxicant and at a time in your life when you were going through a huge amount of pressure.”

Judge Durcan stated however that was no excuse for what Mr Delaney had done.