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Violent teen left boy with life threatening injuries after taking €1 from him

Violent teen left boy with life threatening injuries after taking €1 from him

A teenager who left a schoolboy with life threatening injuries, including a bleed on the brain, after taking €1 from him has been jailed.

Sean Rausch (18) was also sentenced for seven other offences including muggings, attempted robberies and numerous driving offences arising out of a high speed garda chase.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard he drove the stolen car on three wheels while leading eight patrol cars and a garda helicopter on a high speed chase.

He was unlawfully at large at the time having previously been arrested for his part in the mugging and attempted mugging of two groups of schoolboys. The serious assault on another schoolboy occurred the same day as the robberies.

The 17-year-old victim of the attack was left with life threatening injuries from a brain bleed after he fell to the ground following a thump to his face and a subsequent kick to his head. He also had a fractured jaw, broken eye socket, a number of broken teeth and was missing skin from his chin.

The assault, which was carried out by both Rausch and another teenager, occurred a month before the victim's Leaving Certificate but he managed to sit his exams with assistance. His jaw was wired shut for eight weeks and he still doesn't have full use of his mouth.

Rausch of Cushlawn Park, Tallaght, Dubliln pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to two attempted robberies in Old Bawn Tallaght on April 22, 2015, two robberies at The Square Shopping Centre, Tallaght on April 29, 2015; taking possession of a Hyundai Santa Fe knowing it was stolen, handling stolen car keys, endangerment and dangerous driving in the Tallaght area on May 26, 2015.

He also pleaded guilty to assault causing serious harm to the schoolboy, on the same day of the robberies, in the Old Bawn area of Tallaght. He initially denied this charge and elected for trial.

He has 42 previous convictions which were all dealt with in the District Court and include 14 for robbery, burglary, sexual assault and assault.

Judge Melanie Greally had previously sentenced Rausch to two and half years for the robberies.

Today/yesterday (THURS) she sentenced him to a consecutive term of three years on an endangerment charge arising out of the car chase, increasing the term to five and half years. She also sentenced him to five years for the assault which will run alongside the other term.

Judge Greally suspended the final 12 months of the jail term on strict conditions

Garnet Orange SC, defending said his client had been drug free since November 2015 and was very pleased with the progress he had made. He said Rausch acknowledged the injury and emotional trauma he caused the 17 year old.

Counsel said Rausch had a dysfunctional childhood during which he was subjected to violence and parental drug abuse. He had limited ability to read and write, think logically or make decisions.

He acknowledged that his client was at a high risk at re-offending, but said he now expressed a desire to do a leaving certificate and do mechanical engineering.

“These are good signs coming from a dark place”, and would give him options for his future, counsel submitted.

ADDITIONAL EVIDENCE OF THE CRIMES

Speaking of the attack, Judge Greally said it was a “most disturbing offence” during which the victim had been subjected to an assault and robbery of such ferocity that he ended up with life threatening injuries. She said he was extremely lucky to have emerged from the attack without any severe long lasting injuries.

Judge Greally said in relation to the driving offence that Rausch had put a huge number of motorists and pedestrians at serious risk.

Dealing with the robbery convictions the judge said the schoolboys, who were all still in their uniforms, were set upon and subjected to “an unprovoked and gratuitous episode of violence”.

She accepted a probation report and psychologist report before the court indicated that Rausch had been exposed to considerable violence and drug abuse as a child and that he later fell into the company of like-minded youths who were “also lost in the world”.

Judge Greally noted that the reports concluded that Rausch was now coming to a point in his life were he has started to address his difficulties. He had availed of educational opportunities in custody and was dealing with his drug addiction.

Garda Kieran Kilcoyne told Fiona Murphy BL, prosecuting, that Rausch and another person launched an attack on the teenager as he was on his way back to school from lunchtime. The boy emptied his pockets and handed over €1 and house keys.

He was punched in the back and in the face after the attackers shouted “give the lad a stab”. The victim fell to the ground and banged his face off the concrete before he was kicked in the jaw and in the knee.

Rausch accepted later that he had been involved in the assault but denied that he kicked the boy.

Gda Kilcoyne said the following month Rausch had been spotted driving the stolen Hyundai and refused to stop when gardaí ordered him.

The chase lasted for 31 minutes during which Rausch broke 24 sets of traffic lights, crossed over two green areas, drove around three roundabouts the wrong way and drove on the wrong side of a national road for 2km.

Eight patrol cars were involved in the pursuit and nine minutes into it, the car spun out of control bursting the rear driver's wheel, yet Rausch continued to drive.

Gda Kilcoyne said that by the end of the incident Rausch was effectively driving on the hub of the wheel.

The garda air support unit was also called in and the chase ultimately came to an end after gardaí used a stinger device which deflated the two front tyres of the Hyundai. Rausch was taken from the car and arrested.

Dealing with the robberies, Gda Kilcoyne said the first victims were sixth year students on their way home from school when Rausch's accomplice stopped them and asked “Do ye have a phone or any money?”

The first boy said it was at home and tried to push him off but he kept following him and punched him in the back of the head and kicked him. Rausch approached the second teenager and kicked him.

A neighbour of the victims spotted what was going on and Rausch and his accomplice ran off when he approached the group.

Five days later a group of Junior Cert students were in The Square in Tallaght when Rausch's accomplice asked them for their phones. The group tried to get away but the other teenager grabbed one by his school-bag and punched him in the face, before patting down his pockets and taking his iPhone.

Rausch elbowed another teenager in the face while he was trying to get away and burst the boy's lip.

The incident came to an end when a security guard who had been alerted to it, chased Rausch and the other robber away.

Rausch was arrested a short time later, following a garda chase after he was caught hiding in a garden. He was questioned in Tallaght Garda Station and the teenagers' phones were found on him.