NewsCrime Desk

VIDEO: Locals keep watch for twisted predator

Crime DeskBy Patrick O'Connell
Philip Murphy
Philip Murphy

CONVICTED predator Philip Murphy claimed he had “received counselling” in prison and “is no longer a danger to women” after we cornered him in an underground car park in Dublin city centre.

Coward Murphy – who spent eight years in prison for kidnapping a woman and threatening her with a knife – took flight when he spotted our team as he emerged from the Probation Office in Smithfield on Thursday.

Following the attack, Murphy’s Polish victim told how the beast had put her in fear she “was going to be raped or killed” and that “the fear will never leave me”.

But this week Murphy – who made it clear to us he didn’t care for being followed himself – whined that his own life is now in danger.

Fleeing on foot after spotting our camera, Murphy took shelter in a public car park at the rear of the Irish Prison Service building, where he had gone in the hope of seeking long-term accommodation.

After our team followed him inside, Murphy tried to hide.

Identifying ourselves as journalists from the Sunday World, Murphy shouted back at us: “You are putting my life in danger.”

He then got in a lift, descending two levels, and fleeing once again.

We followed the convicted predator down through the bowels of the building before giving chase, as he attempted to escape through several locked doors with no success.

Holding a scarf to his face, we repeatedly told Murphy that we were only looking to speak with him.

“Did you receive counselling in prison?” we asked.

“Yeah, I did,” he said.

“Are you still a danger to women?” we asked next.

“No,” he responded.

Murphy then grabbed his phone to ring someone and complained: “They have me cornered in a f**king car park.”

Our confrontation with Murphy occurred two days after he was freed from Arbour Hill Prison in Dublin, where he has spent the last eight years.

The Sunday World understands that Murphy was housed in emergency accommodation in a B&B on Dublin’s northside after his release.

The 36-year-old father of three, with previous addresses at Elmbrook Crescent, Lucan and Lindisfarne Vale, Clondalkin, served eight years after being convicted of falsely imprisoning a woman in Clondalkin on June 7, 2008.

The woman was waiting at a bus stop at 6.30am on her way to work when a car pulled up.

The driver offered to give her a lift but at first she refused.

He returned a short time later and again offered to give her a lift. The woman got into the car and they drove a distance, chatting normally.

She asked to get out of the car, but he produced a craft knife and told her to be quiet or he would cut her.

The woman pleaded with him and was of the belief that she was going to be raped or killed. She tried to jump out of the moving car but was restrained by the seat belts.

She eventually released the seat belt and when the car stopped she ran.

Murphy previously served a three-year sentence imposed in October 2005 by Judge Desmond Hogan at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for stabbing a taxi driver in the neck with a broken beer bottle – leaving him with life-threatening injuries – and for hijacking his car in 2001.

Accommodating Murphy on a permanent basis is understood to be proving problematic for authorities, who are struggling with a shortage of houses and also because locals in his native Clondalkin have made it clear that he is not welcome back.

Locals last week told the Sunday World there will be a watch kept to ensure locals know of his presence if he returns to the Lindisfarne area of Clondalkin.

“This is a person nobody in this area wants to see come back here,” said one local who is leading a campaign to highlight the potential danger Murphy poses.

“He is a vicious and violent criminal who quite obviously poses a major risk to women in this area.”