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Woman, who attacked and pulled clumps of hair from mum travelling with baby on Dublin Bus, avoids jail

Judge Martin Nolan noted that there were “pre-existing tensions” between the two families involved.

college green 635_90535340_90548428 File photo Source: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

A YOUNG DUBLIN woman who violently attacked a mother travelling on a Dublin Bus with her baby has avoided a jail sentence.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Emily Stewart (22) pulled clumps of hair from her victim’s head and left her bleeding from facial scratches.

Coolock woman pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to Shannon Ryan on a bus outside Connolly Station, Dublin, on 10 March 2017.

The defendant also pleaded guilty to a separate charge of assault causing harm to Sabrina Ryan, the mother of Shannon Ryan, on 12 March 2017, when she bit her finger, punched her and scraped her face.

Today Judge Martin Nolan fully suspended a six-month sentence noting that there were “pre-existing tensions” between the two families.

Garda Daniel Eccles told Elva Duffy BL, prosecuting, that Shannon Ryan got on the 27 bus outside Connolly Station to travel to the city centre with her three-and-a-half month old baby.

Ordered off

The defendant got on at the next stop and ordered Ryan to get off the bus.

The court heard that when Shannon Ryan refused to do this she was “set upon” by the defendant who grabbed her by the hair.

Garda Eccles said Stewart kicked the victim, as she fought back in self defence.

He told Duffy that the victim sustained cuts to her neck, a loss of hair and bruising to her mouth and face.

Two days later the victim’s mother was traveling on the same bus route when Stewart encountered her and began verbally abusing her.

“She dived on her, punched her, leaving her with a black eye, and scraped her face,” Eccles said.

Stewart has three previous convictions for theft.

‘Ashamed and embarrassed’

Emmet Nolan BL, defending, said his client was ashamed and embarrassed despite the fact there was tension between the two families. He said she cooperated fully with gardai and had completed a hairdressing apprenticeship.

The court heard Stewart suffered from mental health issues including anger issues and a borderline personality disorder.

Nolan said Stewart was addicted to illegal drugs at the time of the assaults and was not taking her prescription medication. He said she was remorseful for her actions.

Judge Nolan said it seemed it seemed to him that the defendant attacked the victims in an unprovoked and nasty way.

“It must have been very frightening for them,” he said.

He noted she was taking steps to deal with her problems but said that the fact of the matter were that some of her issues were self-induced.

Judge Nolan ordered her to pay €750 to each victim within one calendar year.

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Sarah Jane Murphy

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