Dylan Murphy (26) attacked an 18-year-old college student while trying to rob him and his 17-year-old girlfriend who had been lying in St Stephen’s Green in Dublin city last summer.
Murphy told the students he was a garda and that he needed to check their bags for alcohol and cannabis. When the man stood up and asked to see some garda identification, Murphy punched him in the chest and knocked him down.
He then began kicking the victim in the head and chest. The victim had some of his teeth broken and his face and hands were cut and bruised.
When his girlfriend tried to call for help, Murphy kicked her. The male victim then handed his wallet and Murphy took bank cards and cash from it and ran off.
Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard that Murphy was on bail at the time for an attack on a taxi driver two years earlier.
Murphy, formerly of Grand Central, Sandyford, Dublin pleaded guilty to attempted robbery of the taxi driver at Dolphins Barn, Dublin city on September 20, 2019. He also pleaded guilty to robbery and attempted robbery at St Stephen’s Green on August 2, 2021.
Detective Garda Des Rodgers told the court that his 65 previous convictions include convictions for robbery, burglary and assaults.
Defending counsel Keith Spencer BL submitted to Judge Pauline Codd that his client had a tragic background with his father murdered when Murphy was seven years old.
He said Murphy was put into State care in Monaghan at the age of 14 and has lived a chaotic, scattered life as an adult, abusing drugs and alcohol.
Counsel said his client doesn't remember much of the incidents but was hanging his head in shame on hearing the evidence in court. He said Murphy wished to make an unreserved apology to the victims and knows what he did was completely wrong.
Judge Codd describes both attacks as “vicious assaults”. She noted that the young man attacked in the park had to cope with the psychological worry that he might have been infected with HIV during the attack.
He said both he and his girlfriend had been traumatised and were left feeling nervous about moving around the city.
She noted Murphy’s tragic background and entrenched drug addiction and said that he seemed to be a very different person when not under the influence of drugs.
She imposed a total operative sentence of eight years but suspended the final year in order to “incentivise rehabilitation”. The suspension was on condition that Murphy engage with the Probation Service and with drug addiction treatment.
She backdated the sentence to last March, when Murphy pleaded guilty to the offences.