Dublin mum thought she was going to be killed by ex partner during vicious attack

Kim Kelly (45) told gardai she was knocked to the ground and then had “feet coming down on top of me like Riverdance”

Kim Kelly was beaten black and blue by Ian McCluskey and David Corr and went to stay in a women’s refuge after the attack

Kim Kelly after attack

Thug Ian McCluskey

Kim Kelly went to stay in a women’s refuge after the attack

Alan SherrySunday World

A woman subjected to two savage assaults by her partner in the space of six weeks said her evil attacker danced on her head “like Riverdance.”

Kim Kelly (45), who suffered domestic abuse on a number of occasions during her relationship with thug Ian McCluskey (54), said she was close to suicide in the wake of the attacks but wanted to speak out to let other victims know there is help out there.

“Ring somebody, whether it is Women’s Aid or gardai or just a friend,” Kim said.

At Dublin Circuit Court on December 21, McCluskey, from The Plaza, Shangan Road, Ballymun, was jailed for five years with one suspended on two counts of assault causing Kim harm, threatening to kill or cause her serious harm and witness intimidation.

His pal David Corr (41), from Ballymun but of no fixed abode, was sentenced to three years with one year suspended for his involvement in the second attack as well threatening to kill or cause her harm and intimidation of a witness.

Kim Kelly after attack

Kim was called a “rat” during the second attack, which took place last March after McCluskey and Corr, who is a convicted sex offender, tried to get her to withdraw a statement in relation to the first assault which happened last January.

Kim told the Sunday World she was threatened with death if she went to gardai after the second attack, and people called to her home looking for her after she gave a statement.

She was in so much fear she slept with an axe beside her bed and said she has since been diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Kim said she had been going out with McCluskey for nine months and had been assaulted by him on a number of occasions previously, but the attacks escalated in January 2022.

“Ian started hitting me through the relationship but then I was badly assaulted by him in January,” she said. “He’s a total scumbag but, like that, he was able to sweet talk me,” she said.

During the January incident McCluskey – who has 75 previous convictions for offences including assault, criminal damage, theft and possession of knives – attacked Kim because she wouldn’t give him a loan of money.

She told gardai she was knocked to the ground and then had “feet coming down on top of me like Riverdance”.

She went to gardai over the first incident, which took place at his flat on January 26, 2002, but was back talking to McCluskey and visited him at his home when the second attack took place on March 1, 2022.

“I got a really big hiding in March from him and his friend.

“He was asking would I drop the charges against him. I said ‘Ian we’re after being drinking we’ll talk about it tomorrow’.

Thug Ian McCluskey

“As I stood up to go to the bathroom, he clocked me and it went on from that then,” she said. McCluskey punched her with a closed fist in the face and then Corr joined in “digging her in the back” while McCluskey was “digging her in the face”.

Kim said the incident went on for over an hour.

“I thought I was going to die. I thought they were going to throw me out the window.

“I was being called a rat as well because I brought charges against him for the previous attack.

“It was over an hour. I tried to run out the front door and I was dragged back in. I don’t know which one of them had done it because I could barely see at this time because of the injuries to my eyes.

“They continued to beat me up and threatened to kill me if I told anyone.”

Kim said she begged for the men to stop but they continued.

“It was horrendous. I had to go into survival mode. It got to the stage where I wasn’t even feeling pain anymore because I was trying to figure a way to get out.”

Kim was covered in blood and could barely see as a result of the beating, and asked the men if she could go into a bedroom for a cigarette, which they eventually let her do.

“I made my way into the bedroom and left the door open so I could hear them talking. When they got into a deep conversation, I felt my way out and opened the door slowly. The lift is outside his apartment so I said I’d go down the stairs.”

She feared McCluskey would see her leaving the apartment and sought help.

Kim Kelly went to stay in a women’s refuge after the attack

“When I finally escaped out of the apartment, I asked two Irish fellas to help me and they refused.

“I was covered in blood at this time, really covered in blood and they just said ‘no sorry’ and walked away. I was refused help.”

Thankfully, she came across another man, who she believes was Eastern European, who helped her and brought her to the garda station.

“I don’t know the name of the person who did help me. I’m hoping if he sees this he may come forward. I’d like to thank him.”

Kim had a litany of injuries and was hospitalised after the attack.

“The guards didn’t even know where the blood was coming from. I was bleeding from my head, from my ear, my eye and eyebrow, my lip and nose. I had sore ribs. I had throat injuries because he choked me.”

“I think he was trying to kill me that night.”

After Kim left hospital she went to a refuge and while she was there men started calling to her family home looking for her. She believes they were sent by McCluskey to try to force her to drop the charges, but she wasn’t there when they called.

“People came to my house looking for me. I had to go to a woman’s refuge after the hospital and then had to go into a safe house.”

The impact of the attack has been horrendous on Kim.

“I still suffer with my face and eye. It’s still so painful. I have scars. I have what looks like a permanent bruise from my eye to my cheek.

“You can still see the swelling there. I won’t look at myself in the mirror. The only time is when I’m doing my hair.”

The psychological scars are even deeper.

“I have been diagnosed with PTSD over this. I had to be talked off the bridge over the Liffey trying to commit suicide over it. I blamed myself,” Kim added.

She said she also only found out after the attack that Corr was previously convicted of sexual assault.

“That played on my mind so much – what could have happened if I didn’t get out when I did?”

Corr has 85 previous convictions for offences including the sexual assault as well as threats to kill and aggravated burglary.

Kim said the fact that Corr joined in the second attack made it worse as he had previously sympathised with her over the first incident.

“I still can’t really wrap my head around somebody who said he was a friend and he wasn’t a fan of Ian because he knew what Ian was after doing [the January assault].

“He saw my face and injuries after the previous incident but then he joined in on the second beating, thinking it’s a free for all.

“He called Ian every dirtbag and scumbag under the sun after the previous attack. Then he joined in the second time. It’s absolutely horrendous.”

Kim said she felt their sentences were too lenient: “I don’t think it was justice.”

McCluskey wrote a letter of apology which was handed into court and apologised as he had done previously following other incidents of domestic violence against Kim, but she doesn’t feel it was genuine.

“He was laughing going back in the room after being sentenced, so he wasn’t really that sorry,” she said.

Kim said she has barely left her room since the court hearing on December 21 and couldn’t enjoy Christmas.

“I’m still struggling. I’m in my bedroom since the day after the sentencing,” she said.

She said she fears the day her attackers are released but is hoping to move to a different address by the time that happens.

Kim also encouraged any other victims of domestic violence to seek help.

“I just want to let people know there is help out there. I didn’t think there was help when he first started hitting me. It took until I had a second big beating for me to realise.

“Don’t be afraid to talk to someone.”

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