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Dublin: 12 °C Friday 28 February, 2020

Man pleads guilty to sexually assaulting teenage girl in Cork hospital ward

The court heard the man sexually assaulted the girl when they were in the same ward at Cork University Hospital last year.

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A 62-YEAR-OLD MAN has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl in a hospital ward in Cork city last year.

The man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had been charged at Cork District Court in June with sexually assaulting the teenage girl in Cork University Hospital on 14 May 2018.

Detective Garda Caroline Keogh of the Cork Protective Services Unit had previously given evidence of arrest, charge and caution. She said the man denied the charge put to him, replying: “I did nothing to that girl, I just shook her hand.”

Garda Keogh said the State would allege that the man sexually assaulted the girl when they were in the same ward at Cork University Hospital.

The State would allege the defendant approached the girl’s bed where she was sleeping and touched her breasts and her vagina. She awoke to find her private parts being touched, said Keogh.

Today at Cork Circuit Criminal Court the man pleaded guilty to the sexual assault of the girl.

Defence counsel Dermot Sheehan (SC) applied for a psychiatric report to be compiled in relation to his client prior to the sentencing hearing on 7 February next year.

The man is currently engaging with mental health services in the community.

Free legal aid was granted in the case. Judge Sean O’Donnabhain directed the man be remanded on bail pending his next court appearance. A psychiatric report will be prepared in the interim.

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Olivia Kelleher

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