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14-year-old Dublin girl who sprayed deodorant in Irish Rail inspector’s eyes avoids sentence

CourtsBy Tom Tuite
14-year-old Dublin girl who sprayed deodorant in Irish Rail inspector’s eyes avoids sentence

A 14-YEAR-OLD Dublin girl, who sprayed deodorant into the eyes of an Iarnrod Eireann ticket inspector, has been spared a criminal record and a sentence.

The young girl had pleaded guilty to Public Order Act charges for breach of the peace and failing to give her name to a Garda in connection with the incident at Merrion Road in Dublin 4 on October 19 last. 

However, she was given a chance to take part in a crime diversion programme aimed at diverting first-time offenders from committing more crime. 

Garda Shane Cahill told Dublin Children's Court that the girl, who has no prior criminal convictions, got off the DART and was approached by rail staff.

"She sprayed Lynx deodorant into the eyes of one of the ticket inspectors," Gda Cahill told Judge John O'Connor.

The garda arrived at the scene and brought the inspector on a drive around the area during which he was able to identify the girl.

"She became abusive towards me and started screaming loudly," Gda Cahill said. He made a demand under the Public Order Act for her name but she refused to provide any details and was arrested and taken to Irishtown Garda station.

In pleas for leniency, defence counsel Damian McKeone said there had been an altercation on the train with a member of a group of people who had been travelling with the girl. 

"She felt they were being man-handled at the time," the lawyer said, adding that the teen, who was accompanied to court by her mother, is genuinely sorry and regrets her actions.

Judge O'Connor had noted the teenager, who did not address the court, was agreeable to taking part in a crime diversion plan for first-time offenders and which could leave her without a criminal record.

The Probation Service had drafted a contract setting out an action plan of restorative justice activities. In December, the girl agreed to sign up to the plan.

"All you have to do is comply and you will be left without a conviction," Judge John O'Connor had cautioned the teen. Alternatively, he warned her, he had the power to also make a parental supervision order or he could consider a sentence.

Today, when the case resumed, Judge John O'Connor noted that the teenager had complied with the order and he struck out the case leaving the girl, who was accompanied to court by her mother and her barrister, with a clean record.