Victim felt violent robbery 'was done for sport, not out of desperation'; woman jailed

By Declan Brennan

A woman has been jailed for three years for her part in a violent late-night robbery which left the victim with a broken eye socket.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard evidence of how people walked by while a group of people kicked and punched Kevin Carthy as he lay on the ground.

Judge Melanie Greally said that Clodagh Forde (19) was a wholehearted participant in an attack that involved extreme and wanton violence. She was a month into a suspended prison sentence at the time.

Forde, formerly of Le Froy House, Eden Quay, Dublin pleaded guilty to the robbery of Kevin Carthy at Palace Place, Dublin city centre on May 17, 2016.

Sentencing Forde today/yesterday (FRI), Judge Greally said she was an intelligent person with potential but she hasd a propensity to acts of extreme violence.

She has eight previous convictions for robbery. Most of these offences were committed when she was still a juvenile and living in state care.

Detective Garda David Errity told Fiona Murphy BL, prosecuting, that Mr Carthy had been out socialising around Harcourt Street earlier in the night. He was on Lord Edward Street, when he needed to urinate and went up a lane-way.

A group of people were in the laneway and as the victim went to walk back out of the lane, a person jumped on his back, knocking him to the ground.

The victim tried to protect his head and face but some of the gang held the man's arms and hands back while others kicked him in the face.

Mr Carthy begged them to stop kicking him but he heard his attackers laughing. He also saw people on the street walking on past the assault. After the attack ended the victim walked out of the lane and a young couple came to his aid.

The court heard that the victim's left eye socket was fractured during the attack. He was left with bruising to his face, chest, back, arms and legs and severe swelling to his eye. He could not open his left eye for a week and felt the attack had left a residual effect on his eye. He still suffers from back pain as a result of the assault.

The gang checked his pockets during the attack and took his wallet, some cash, a mobile phone and a gold ring. The court heard the total financial loss to him was around €14,000.

In a victim impact statement, he said he believed he was going to die during the attack. He said he lay on the ground feeling scared and vulnerable while begging the gang to stop the attack.

He said the sense of humiliation still haunted him. He had just qualified in social care practice working with children at risk and now felt it was a waste of time because he no longer felt he could help.

“He was left feeling so vulnerable by the young people he wanted to help,” Ms Murphy said. Counsel said the victim felt the robbery was motivated not by desperation but by sport.

The court heard that Forde told gardai that she had sat on the victim's face at one point and later stood on his head. She told the court that what she did was unacceptable and said she wanted to address her drug addiction issues.

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