Woman (37) launched ‘savage’ assault on mum who had just given birth
‘It was a very bad attack on a lady in a very vulnerable position’
A woman who carried out a “savage” attack on another woman who had just returned home from the hospital after visiting her premature baby will be sentenced later this year.
Miranda McCabe (37) of Tubberclare Meadows, Navan, Co Meath, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to Stephanie Dunne at Priorswood Avenue, Blanchardstown, Dublin, on November 27, 2021.
She has five previous convictions.
Garda Mark Reilly told Diarmuid Collins, BL, prosecuting, that Ms Dunne had just travelled home after visiting her premature baby in the hospital.
When she got out of her car, she noticed a car with a man and a woman sitting inside.
As she was walking towards her door, she heard footsteps behind her.
Gda Reilly said Ms Dunne was standing in her porch when the woman from the car (McCabe) jumped towards her and headbutted her.
McCabe punched her several more times and put her in a headlock.
The court heard that the man who had been in the car was now standing in Ms Dunne’s garden dressed in black, wearing gloves, and had his face covered with a scarf.
He was also holding what Ms Dunne described as “butcher knives”.
Ms Dunne's son opened the front door and as McCabe swung to hit Ms Dunne, she missed and instead hit the son.
McCabe continued to hit Ms Dunne several more times before the man dragged her away.
As they were leaving, McCabe said: “This is only the start”. They both got into the car and drove away.
The court heard that the gardaí were called and given a description of the car McCabe was travelling in.
As the gardaí entered the estate, they saw a car matching the description driving away.
Gda Reilly said that when McCabe was arrested, she made no admissions during her interview.
A clump of hair which Ms Dunne had pulled from McCabe was found on Ms Dunne's porch. This was tested, and the DNA from the clump of hair matched McCabe.
Ms Dunne read her own victim impact statement to the court and said that “I will always be on my guard. My daughter was in ICU, I didn’t know these people,” she said.
Gda Reilly agreed with Patrick McCarthy, BL, defending that the early guilty plea by his client was helpful to gardaí.
McCabe's co-accused remains before the courts.
Mr McCarthy said his client had suffered from mental health difficulties and was going through a difficult time at the time of the offence.
Counsel said his client is extremely embarrassed by her behaviour and wished to convey her apologies to Ms Dunne and the court.
He said this was an isolated incident.
He asked the court to take into account that McCabe is a single mother to three children, one of whom has significant medical needs.
Sentencing McCabe today, Judge Martin Nolan said she was very aggressive and attacked the woman “savagely”.
“The motive for this savage attack is not clear,” the judge said, adding there appeared to be a “tenuous connection” between the injured partner and McCabe.
“It was a very bad attack on a lady in a very vulnerable position,” Judge Nolan said. The victim had been “grievously attacked and humiliated”, he added.
The judge noted McCabe has three children, one of whom has additional needs. He expressed concern for the future of this child if he was to imprison McCabe, “which is my instinct to do”.
He said he would not finalise the matter immediately and instead ordered a Probation Services report to ascertain if McCabe is suitable for community service. He adjourned the case to May 12.
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