‘The more injuries a guard suffers, the more it will be accepted until we’re dealing with a very serious assault’, says Longford judge

Jessica Thompson

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Jessica Thompson

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jessica.thompson@longfordleader.ie

‘The more injuries a guard suffers, the more it will be accepted until we’re dealing with a very serious assault’, says Longford judge

Judge Seamus Hughes has expressed disappointment at the DPP’s decision not to reconsider directions for summary disposal in a violent case where two gardaí were assaulted in August of last year.

The case initially came before Judge Hughes in May of this year when it was revealed that one garda had received a back injury, while a second had an eye infection which was still persisting when the case was heard earlier this year.

“The DPP had directed summary disposal and you requested the matter be referred back to them to reconsider.

“The DPP have stuck to their guns and directed summary disposal,” said Sgt Paddy McGirl last Friday afternoon.

“A guard was off work for five months with a back injury,” Judge Hughes exclaimed.

“That guard had an underlying condition from a previous back injury,” Sgt McGirl replied.

“Gda Keegan was off for six weeks but still has an eye infection,” said Juge Hughes.

“The DPP were aware of the seriousness of the case,” said Sgt McGirl.

“The more injuries a guard suffers, the more it will be accepted until we’re dealing with a very serious assault,” said an unhappy Judge Hughes.

Hugh Myers, 18 Ardleigh Crescent, Mullingar, Martin Nevin Jnr, 1 Knockloughlin, Co Longford, and Martin Nevin Snr, 1 Knockloughlin, Co Longford, were all charged with the incident, which took place on August 10, 2019.

Gardaí in Granard received a call from the Nevin family on that date at approximately 9pm, asking them to remove Martin Nevin Jnr from the premises “because he was beating his pregnant wife”.

Gda Shane Carr and Gda Angela Keegan attempted to arrest Mr Nevin but Mr Myers intervened and the two gardaí and Mr Nevin fell to the ground, which ultimately resulted in a violent struggle between both gardaí and all three accused on the ground.

Gda Keegan suffered an eye injury which was persisting almost a year on. She previously explained that she suffers occasional blurred vision, for which she has to receive treatment in a clinic.

Gda Carr, the court heard, suffered a back injury in a serious road traffic collision a number of years ago, which was aggravated by this incident.

The court previously heard that Mr Nevin Jnr had received a very serious eye injury as a result of an assault a few days earlier and couldn’t cope with the loss of his vision, so he took to drinking.

“He lost the sight in his eye, so he decided to try and do the same to someone else - a garda and a keeper of the peace,” Judge Hughes said.

Solicitor for the defence, John Quinn requested that Mr Nevin Jnr and Mr Nevin Snr’s cases be put back to November when he would have a medical report which he would use in mitigation.

He added that Mr Myers was hoping to have his case dealt with on Friday last.

“I’m not dividing it. I want to deal with all three,” said Judge Hughes, adjourning the case to November 20.