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Tuesday 7 February 2023 Dublin: 9°C
# Courts
Man who had sex with 14-year-old neighbour has sentence delayed
The man had initially denied knowing the girl, but later admitted to having sex with her in his bedroom.

SCC Rolling 5 Sasko Lazarov / Rollingnews.ie Sasko Lazarov / Rollingnews.ie / Rollingnews.ie

A YOUNG DUBLIN man will be sentenced later for having sex with a 14-year-old neighbour.

Garda Campbell Brennan revealed that the man (26) had been in a relationship with the girl. She later told gardaí that while the man, who was aged 21 years at the time, had not publicised the relationship, he had been affectionate to her when they were alone.

She said she had sex with him on one occasion while she was in his house.

The man, who cannot be named to protect his victim’s identity, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to having sexual intercourse with a child under the age of 17 on a date between 1 and 24 July 2014.

He has 47 previous convictions for assault, drugs offences, false imprisonment, criminal damage and road traffic matters.

Garda Brennan told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that the sexual offence came to light after the girl told her school chaplain, who then notified the teenager’s family and gardaí.

Admitted

The man initially said he didn’t know the girl, but later admitted he had had sex with her once in his bedroom. He said he had not been clear about what age she was.

In a victim impact statement read out by McGowan, the girl described how she became very depressed and attempted suicide after the incident. She said she suffered anxiety and attended rehab for her drug and alcohol addictions.

The girl said she had to give up on school because she couldn’t concentrate on anything and that her problems affected her parents’ wellbeing also.

She said her behaviour became aggressive and she pushed away from her parents, but things have been improving because of the treatment she has received. She revealed she feels paranoid walking past the man’s house and different triggers make her think about the incident.

Garda Brennan said he was not aware the girl had attended mental health services prior to the incident when Michael Lynn SC, defending, put this to him.

Difficult childhood

The garda agreed that the man had had a difficult childhood, had left school at 14 years of age and found himself in a world of drugs and alcohol. The garda further agreed the man had had periods of homelessness.

Lynn submitted to Judge Martina Baxter that his client had entered an early guilty plea, had been co-operative and expressed remorse for any harm he had caused.

Counsel submitted that his client had detoxified from drugs while in custody awaiting sentence on this matter. He said the man had completed an anger management programme and was hopeful to engage with a psychologist in this area.

Judge Baxter noted that “anger is clearly an issue” as the man had 12 disciplinary reports on his prison record.

She adjourned the sentence until October pending an updated probation report.

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Author
Aoife Nic Ardghail