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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 16 October, 2019

Cork man accused of sexual assault and harassing four teenage girls on a bus 'told racist jokes', court hears

The man denies the charges.

The man has gone on trial in Cork Circuit Criminal Court.
The man has gone on trial in Cork Circuit Criminal Court.
Image: PA Images

A MAN IN his forties allegedly harassed four teenage girls on a bus telling them racist and sexist jokes before sexually assaulting one of them, a court has heard.

Anthony Quigley (45) of Roches Heights, Mitchelstown, Co Cork has gone on trial at Cork Circuit Criminal Court in relation to seven counts on the indictment.

He pleaded not guilty to a charge of sexual assault, to four charges of harassment, a single charge of assault and one of threatening and abusive behaviour on 4 December 2018.

Judge Brian O’Callaghan and a jury of four women and eight men heard an outline of the case from prosecution barrister, Imelda Kelly SC.

It is alleged that Quigley unlawfully touched one of the girls by touching her upper thigh.

Kelly said the teenagers went to the back of the bus on the afternoon of 4 December, 2018.

There was one spare seat next to them at the window and Quigley sat there.

She said the State’s case is that he encroached on the personal space of the girls and starting asking them questions with sexual overtones.

Speaking via video link one of the girls said the defendant made her uncomfortable from the offset.

He started telling jokes. Some were racist about Chinese and people with dots on their foreheads.

She said it wasn’t long before she felt a sense of “stranger danger.”

She told the court she started coughing and then he commenced inappropriately touching her.

“I was terrified. He started patting my thigh a few times throughout the journey. He was pushing close to me and breathing on me. He was invading my privacy. He smelled awful and he asked a few times if we liked his aftershave.”

She testified that Quigley started calling one of her friends “Blondie” and kept asking for her phone number.

Another teenager, who spoke via video link, said the man repeatedly said she was sexy.

He called her hot and insisted that she must have a boyfriend.

“I was scared to go to the bus driver because I did not know him. He kept touching (her friend) on the thigh and the leg.”

He took out a piece of paper and gave me his phone number. He told me to call him and to send him compliments.

The girl said as he left his seat he grabbed her hand and squeezed it very hardly.

“I felt scared. I did not know what he was going to do. I did not know who this man was or what he would do if he got angry.”

The girl gave the piece of paper to her teacher the following day and the principal alerted the gardai.

The court also heard that the man allegedly told the girls that he had done the Lotto.

They claimed he said he would bring the girls to Disneyland to share his room if he managed to scoop the jackpot.

The case continues tomorrow. 

Comments are closed as the trial is ongoing

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About the author:

Olivia Kelleher

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