Garda injured in ramming incident awarded £23,074


A garda who was injured when a stolen car rammed the Garda car in which she was a front-seat observer was awarded damages of £23,074 by the High Court yesterday.

Garda Evelyn Doherty (31), stationed at Dundrum Garda station, Co Dublin, sustained injuries to her left shoulder and arm in an incident at Glencullen Road near Kilternan, in the early hours of November 11th, 1993. In proceedings under the Garda Compensation Acts, she sued the Minister for Finance.

Mr Justice Budd said it appeared Garda Doherty suffered a soft tissue injury which might affect some of the nerves in the left shoulder and arm area. He had read medical reports which seemed to indicate she would make a full recovery.

The judge allowed £18,000 damages for pain and suffering to date and £3,000 for pain and suffering in the future, in addition to £2,074 special damages.

Mr Padraig McCartan SC, for Garda Doherty, said his client had ongoing symptoms. At the time of the incident her pursuits were cycling, jogging and swimming. She was now unable to cycle because of tightness and pain in the shoulder-blade area but was still swimming.

In evidence, Garda Doherty said that she was wearing a seat belt at the time. She was pulled forward and held by the seat belt but still hit her head on the car window. She had not jogged since the incident. She had tightness between her shoulder blades.

Her neck had improved as time went on but the "pulling" in her back remained. She was now doing office work at Garda Headquarters in the Phoenix Park and had not been "on the beat" since the incident. She would prefer to be back on the street and active.