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Warning as 'disturbed individual' who set fire to pal is back on streets

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Blaine O'Mahony

Blaine O'Mahony

Blaine O'Mahony

A MASSIVE garda alert is in place in the capital in relation to a 34-year-old criminal who has fantasies of murdering someone and complete hostility for people in authority.

Gardaí have been warned to use "extreme caution" if they have to interact with Rathmines man Blaine O' Mahony, who is currently living in a city centre hostel.

"All officers have been put on alert in relation to this disturbed individual," a senior source told the Herald.

"He is living in a location right in the heart of the city and Pearse Street gardaí have the unenviable task of managing him as he wanders the city streets," the source added.

The situation is so serious that an internal garda bulletin has been issued to officers about O' Mahony after he was arrested earlier this month in relation to a bizarre incident on Camden Street where he allegedly tried to damage a garda van.

Officers had been responding to an incident where it is alleged that O'Mahony was harassing people in a cafe. He is due to appear in court later this month for attempted criminal damage.

This was the first interaction gardaí had with him since he was detained under the Mental Health Act in 2014 after he attempted to set himself on fire shortly after being released from jail.

He was hospitalised after this incident until last December, but is now back on the streets and considered a "major danger" to the public, according to sources.

In his last interaction with the courts, Judge Martin Nolan sentenced O'Mahony to five years in jail for producing a knife during an incident with his mother and threatening gardaí with a broken bottle in a second incident.

"It seems to me I have a duty to protect society from him. He has a history of incredibly sadistic and violent behaviour," Judge Nolan commented.

He suspended the final 18 months of the consecutive term having taken into account that O'Mahony pleaded guilty to the offence and had been diagnosed with schizophrenia.

Judge Nolan noted that psychiatric reports before the court concluded that O'Mahony's mental illness "was not the driving force behind his criminality" and an alcohol-dependant syndrome was the cause of his offending behaviour.

"His excessive drinking brings out character traits that make him violent," Judge Nolan said before he directed that O'Mahony be of good behaviour for two years upon his release from prison and remain under the supervision of the Probation Service for that time.

In October 2005, O'Mahony was jailed for 10 years, later reduced to seven, after he admitted setting fire to his friend at a party. He then laughed as the victim screamed for help.

The court heard that the victim's lower body caught fire and then his boots, which he was unable to remove.

O'Mahony was also sentenced for kicking an elderly man unconscious where he grabbed the victim by his throat and repeatedly attacked him before stamping on his face.

Herald