Man drove car onto bonfire while drunk then assaulted three gardai

CourtsBy Sunday World
Darren McKevitt
Darren McKevitt

A man who drove a car onto a bonfire at Halloween while drunk and then assaulted three gardaí has received a partially suspended five year sentence.

Darren McKevitt (26) of St Peter’s Road, Walkinstown, Dublin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to arson of a car, dangerous driving, driving under the influence of alcohol, driving without insurance and three counts of assault at Durrow Road, Crumlin on October 31, 2014.

He also pleaded guilty to possessing a stolen Toyota Avensis, PSV certificate, Irish driving license and insurance certificate and unlawful possession of a stun gun all at Cushlawn Park, Tallaght on November 24, 2014.

Judge Patricia Ryan previously told McKevitt that he had to continue working with probation officers and undergo drug rehabilitation and employment training.

Yesterday she imposed a sentence of five years, backdated to November 2014, and suspended the balance.

The court heard McKevitt has nine previous convictions, including one for possession of drugs for sale or supply.

Garda Michael Creegan told Monika Leech BL, prosecuting, that Garda Michael O’Sullivan arrived at a bonfire and saw a vehicle doing handbrake turns around it. He said that “to his horror” he saw the vehicle drive into the fire and McKevitt jumping out and running away.

Gardaí chased McKevitt before the accused swung a punch at Reserve Garda Sean White, causing him to fall over and fracture his ankle. McKevitt ran past and said “take that, pig,” Gda Creegan testified.

McKevitt also assaulted Gda O’Sullivan and Gda Donal Faye before being arrested and taken to Crumlin Garda Station. Blood tests showed that he was five times over the alcohol limit for driving.

Libby Charlton BL, defending, told Judge Ryan that McKevitt’s judgement was extremely compromised by the amount of alcohol he drank. Ms Charlton said McKevitt had drug and alcohol problems, but that he had completed a drug counselling course and was now drug free.

Garda Kevin Bowman said he caught McKevitt on November 24, 2014 sitting in a taxi that had been reported hijacked from a taxi driver the previous morning.

He told Elizabeth Mullins BL, prosecuting, that McKevitt told him he'd seen the car advertised by someone three days before. Gardai found the other stolen items and the stun gun at a house where McKevitt had been staying at the time.

By Declan Brennan