Victim of ‘rape-kit’ carrying gamer convention predator hits back
GAMER rapist Keith Hearne’s victim has labelled his attempts to blame autism and bipolar disorder for her rape as “an insult to people” with those medical conditions.
Speaking with the Sunday World, 24-year-old Dominique Meehan also said she will never accept an apology from him for the rape, saying she believes the fact he was carrying a “rape-kit” shows it was methodically pre-planned and “if it hadn’t been me, he would have raped someone else that day”.
This week, Hearne, of Allenton Drive, Tallaght, pleaded guilty to two counts of rape, one count of oral rape and one count of falsely imprisoning Dominique in a hotel in Blanchardstown on July 4, 2015.
Before his conviction, Hearne was involved in organising a number of Gaming Conventions but was known as a loner.
The Sunday World can reveal in his yearbook entry for Old Bawn Community School, Hearne described his future plans as:
“I want to set the world on fire and beyond.”
Today Dominique also reveals her belief that had Hearne not been interrupted during her horrific false imprisonment and rape at the ArcadeCon gaming convention in July 2015, he would have carried through on his threat to kill her.
“I have friends who are on the autism spectrum and friends who are bipolar who would never hurt anyone, so it’s an insult to people like that to say that’s what made him do this,” she said.
“I knew at the time that he had a knife and restraints with him, but I only found out this week about the condoms and all the other things.
“That to me means this was pre-planned. He was going to rape someone that day and if it hadn’t been me then it would have been someone else.
“I could never accept an apology from him for what he has done to me. He has never offered one, other than his barrister saying that he is remorseful.
“He has ruined my life. During the attack he said he was going to break my neck and my life flashed before my eyes. I thought he was going to kill me.”
Dominique was in court on Monday when Hearne was jailed, pending sentence in June, for falsely imprisoning and raping her as she set up the screening room during the ArcadeCon convention in the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Blanchardstown in 2015.
The shocking attack occurred after Hearne entered the room with a bag containing a ‘rape-kit’, which included a prop knife, handcuffs, condoms, a mask and sadomasochistic items.
He then locked the door behind him, trapping Dominque inside.
Hearne (28), then told Dominique: “I could break your neck here and now, would you prefer that?” He then told her to be a “good girl”.
He then bound her hands with his tie and raped her. The attack stopped only when another conference worker entered the room using a hotel key card.
Gardaí were called and Hearne was arrested at the scene. He told gardaí he had gone to the convention in the hopes of getting with another woman.
When that woman rejected him he said he had “anger flowing through him” and he then entered the meeting room and attacked his victim.
When she screamed, he told her he had a knife in his bag and would use it if she wasn’t quiet.
Mr Justice Patrick McCarthy adjourned sentencing to June 19 for further medical reports.
Defence barrister Michael Bowman told the court that Hearne has mental health issues and suffers from a bipolar disorder. He had not taken his medication for some period around the time of the attack.
Mr Bowman said his client engaged in “absolute opportunism and exploitation” of his victim and there was “no excuse” for what he did.
However, he said Hearne has no previous convictions and suffers from a range of conditions, including Asperger Syndrome, ADHD, dyslexia and bipolar disorder.
Dominique told the Sunday World how during the sickening attack she pleaded with Hearne to stop repeatedly, telling him that she was gay.
“I told him that during the attack, but it didn’t stop him,” she said. I’ll never fully put this behind me and that’s partly why I am waiving my anonymity, so I can help other people who have gone through this.
“It was until after he was placed in custody on Monday that I felt fully safe for the first time since this happened.
“I will definitely be coming up for the sentencing hearing. I need to see him being taken away.”
Dominique also insisted she is untroubled by the fact that some people within the community continue to voice support for Hearne online.
“I feel sorry for his friends,” she said.
“I have seen some of them saying people should remember the man he was before this, but I can only think they are in shock and haven’t come to terms with the reality of what he did that day.
“But these people are just a whisper to me in the face of the huge amounts of support I have had from my family and friends and even from people who never knew me.”