| 14.6°C Dublin

Sex attacks Man who avoided prison for hospital sex assault jailed after separate assault in bus station

Andrew O'Donovan (64) shouted in court that he needed to go home to feed his cattle as he was led away to begin prison sentences totalling 27 months

Close

Andrew O'Donovan (64) of Butlersgift, Drimoleague, Co Cork, at Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Photo: Cork Courts Limited

Andrew O'Donovan (64) of Butlersgift, Drimoleague, Co Cork, at Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Photo: Cork Courts Limited

Andrew O'Donovan (64) of Butlersgift, Drimoleague, Co Cork, at Cork Circuit Criminal Court. Photo: Cork Courts Limited

A widower who escaped a prison sentence for sexually assaulting a young girl in an Irish hospital was jailed after he admitted repeatedly rubbing himself against another terrified teenage girl in a bus station.

Andrew O'Donovan (64) shouted in court that he needed to go home to feed his cattle as he was led away to begin prison sentences totalling 27 months.

O'Donovan of Butler's Gift, Drimoleague, Co Cork, pleaded guilty before Cork Circuit Criminal Court to sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl at a bus station on August 20, 2020.

The offence occurred just six months after O'Donovan had avoided a prison sentence for sexually assaulting a different 17-year-old girl in Cork University Hospital (CUH) where he was a patient.

In February 2020 he was handed an 18 month suspended prison sentence for the CUH sexual assault which occurred in May 2018.

CUH medical staff only became alerted to Mr O'Donovan sexually assaulting the teenage girl when his heart monitor suddenly showed elevated cardiac activity.

He had been placed in a bed directly beside the 17-year-old girl in a four-bed ward.

Three of the four people on the ward were elderly men.

The teenage girl had suffered life-threatening injuries in an accident and was unable to react when she awoke to find O'Donovan fondling her outside her clothing.

Judge Sean O'Donnabháin heard that another teenage girl had been fondled by O'Donovan at a bus station last year.

In a powerful victim impact statement, the young woman said she was left feeling dirty and unclean by O'Donovan's actions.

"The accused approached me and went to rub off me. I was scared and tried to make eye contact with other people pleading for help, nobody seemed to notice. He moved away and then came back and started to do the same thing," she said.

Sunday World Newsletter

Sign up for the latest news and updates

This field is required This field is required

"He left me with a feeling of being dirty and unclean. I feel physically sick when I think of the evening and what happened to me. I don't feel safe anymore. I feel I have to cover my body completely in case I draw any unwanted attention."

The young woman said she fears for her safety in public and stands next to the security guard at the bus station if her boyfriend doesn't accompany her.

"It is so unfair that I am the one suffering after this. I was an innocent party minding my own business."

Detective Garda Craig Peterson said that O'Donovan had asked the teenager if she would meet him before lunging at her as if to touch her breasts.

She moved and managed to avoid having her breasts touched.

The court was told O'Donovan's wife died a number of years ago.

Defence counsel Dermot Sheehan BL said his client had been treated for mental health issues since the 1970s.

The judge was told the defendant lived "a meagre existence" but also apparently has little insight into his behaviour.

Judge O'Donnabháin noted that the 18 month suspended prison sentence imposed last year for the CUH assault had not served as any kind of deterrent for O'Donovan.

He said the 17-year-old girl at the bus station had endured "a nasty experience".

Judge O'Donnabháin imposed an 18 month sentence for the bus station assault, suspending nine months of it, but also reactivated the 18 month suspended sentence imposed for the CUH sexual assault.

O'Donovan now faces total prison sentences of 27 months.

As he was being led out of court he shouted that "I did nothing to her" and displayed his medication box.


 He also shouted that he needed to go home to feed his cattle.

Download the Sunday World app

Now download the free app for all the latest Sunday World News, Crime, Irish Showbiz and Sport. Available on Apple and Android devices


Privacy