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Violent disorder Restorative justice report for teen guilty of ‘scary’ gang attack on Garda detectives outside station

The youth, aged 17 at the time of the incident, pleaded not guilty of taking part in violent disorder by using or threatening to use violence on the night of June 13, 2019.

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A RESTORATIVE justice report has been sought on a youth found guilty of violent disorder after two Garda detectives were surrounded, beaten and pushed in front of an on-coming car.

The detectives responded to a 999 call in Balbriggan, Co Dublin but were attacked outside their station and an attempt was made to grab one of their official firearms, a court heard.

The youth, aged 17 at the time of the incident, pleaded not guilty of taking part in violent disorder by using or threatening to use violence on the night of June 13, 2019.

However, following a hearing before Judge Treasa Kelly at Dublin Children's Court, he was found guilty.

She described a pre-sentence probation report on the youth as “quite positive” and noted he was still in education and involved in sports. The teen continued to have support of his mother who came to court with him on every day the case was listed, she observed.

It was obviously a serious incident, but he had been immature at the time, his barrister submitted. Judge Kelly adjourned the case for a restorative justice report which can lead to a defendant being spared a conviction.

It could help him understand the significance of the events on the night of the incident, she said.

The case resumes in March.

The incident happened outside Balbriggan Garda station where the youth encouraged a crowd to attack the detectives after he was arrested.

The court heard a passing motorist contacted gardai after noticing a group of youths outside the station surrounding another person who was “balled up” on the ground. He was kicked and punched, she said.

Detective Garda Gerard Moroney told the trial that at about 11.55pm he and colleague Detective Garda Colm Fitzpatrick were on patrol. They observed 15 males and another male on the ground.

One youth told the garda detectives to “stop harassing us”, he said.

The witnesses said his colleague approached the teenager and asked for his details.

He said the youth replied “you are not getting my f****ng name”.

Detective Garda Moroney told the court he told the teenager, “We can do it here or in the station” but the teen refused to give his name.

He was arrested and allegedly told the other youths, “get them off me, attack them, film it, all of this kind of stuff,” Detective Garda Moroney told the court.

The detectives were punched and kicked.

“Someone shouted ‘push them out on the road, there is a car coming’,” Detective Garda Moroney said.

He described the incident as scary and told the court some of the group pushed them out on the road but the on-coming car, a taxi, stopped.

Detective Garda Moroney told the court he and his colleague, had been pushed onto the road. The teen was handcuffed then and “the punches and kicks were still coming”.

The defendant did not strike them just told the others to attack them, he said.

Detective Garda Fitzpatrick told the court he felt someone, who is facing separate proceedings, touching the holster of his gun.

He shouted “armed gardai, get back”, at which they scattered and the station was called for assistance, the court heard.

He said about eight of the group had attacked him and his colleague.

It ended when other gardai came out the station.

Another youth who laughed as he filmed the incident was stopped on the night but he was not charged. His video footage was not obtained.

The defendant had also been questioned earlier that night by other gardai and had given his details them, the court was told.

The judge ruled that two other youths charged over the incident had no case to answer and their charges were dismissed.


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