Struck out | 

Man avoids conviction after performing sex act in Dublin park while watching teen girls

The Judge struck out the charge, telling Brennan Donegan (27) he did not want to see him before the court again

Hartstown Park. Photo: Google Maps


A young man hid in the bushes and performed a sex act on himself while looking at two teenage girls in a public park, a court has heard.

Gavin Brennan Donegan (27) pulled up his zipper after performing the act and walked into a nearby shop, where gardaí spoke to him.

Judge David McHugh struck out the charge, telling Donegan he did not want to see him before the court again. The judge also ordered him to continue to work with a social worker.

The defendant, with an address at Willan’s Rise in Ongar, Dublin 15, admitted to engaging in an act of public masturbation causing fear and distress to another at Hartstown Park in Clonsilla, on March 31 last year.

Sergeant Maria Callaghan told Blanchardstown District Court that gardaí went to the scene around 3pm after they received reports a male had been seen flashing his genitals at two female teenagers.

Sgt Callaghan said a witness followed the defendant into the shop, which was where Donegan was stopped and spoken to by gardaí.

Sgt Callaghan said the witness told gardaí he was walking his dog when he saw a man standing in bushes off the footpath.

The man was looking through the bushes at two teenage girls, around 14 or 15 years old, who were sitting nearby.

The court heard that Donegan was performing a sex act on himself as he watched the girls.

Sgt Callaghan said the witness shouted at the defendant, who pulled up his zip, came out of the bushes and walked along the path before into the shop.

When Donegan was spoken to by gardaí he told them “I won’t do it again” and “this is my first warning”, the court heard.

Sgt Callaghan said Donegan had no contact with the two teenage girls.

The court heard that Donegan had never been in trouble before.

Defence solicitor Liam Cadogan said Donegan was on the autism spectrum, and he handed a number of medical certificates to the judge.

Mr Cadogan said Donegan, who was not working, had “fallen through the cracks in the system”.

He was living in the family home but he was working with a social worker, and hoped to eventually move into his own accommodation.

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