herald

Friday 20 October 2017

Boy (15) pleads not guilty to assaulting principal

A 15-year-old boy has pleaded not guilty to assaulting a school principal, where it is said she tried to protect one of her pupils from a suspected knife attack.

It is claimed the incident took place after the then 14-year-old defendant, from south Dublin, stole his father's high-powered car. Yesterday, defence solicitor Aonghus McCarthy told Judge John O'Connor at the Dublin Children's Court that his client was pleading not guilty.

The teenager is charged with assaulting the principal, attempted burglary with intent to attack another boy with a knife, criminal damage as well as car theft and related motoring offences.

bail

Judge O'Connor remanded the boy, who was accompanied to court by a parent, on continuing bail pending his trial which will take place at the juvenile court later this month.

The court also heard that social services personnel are trying to assist the teenager and are addressing educational issues.

Earlier, Gda Shirley McCabe said it would be alleged that at about 9.10am on a date in January this year the accused teenager entered "by breaking a window on a side door of a classroom".

"He entered the classroom to get into a communal hall," Gda McCabe told the court.

She said it was alleged that the school's principal "tried to stop him" and a "physical altercation" broke out between her and the boy.

It was alleged he had gone to the school looking for another pupil he had had a falling-out with.

He then used abusive language to members of staff and exited via the window he had earlier broken to gain entry.

Members of staff had to hide the youngster who the defendant "was going after" and took him to a kitchen in the school.

shouting

However, it is alleged that the accused then "ran to the front of the school" and made his way to the kitchen window "so he could see in".

"It is alleged he broke a window of the kitchen and it is alleged he waved an implement, possibly a knife, through the window," Gda McCabe said.

She added that it was also alleged the accused was shouting at the slightly younger boy.

It is further alleged that the defendant had stolen his father's high-powered car and he then drove it to the school on the morning of the alleged incident.

Afterwards, he allegedly crashed it into another car before he drove home.

As a condition of bail the boy must now obey a curfew and has been barred from certain districts in Dublin.

The teenager has also been warned that he would be held in custody if he broke these terms.

hnews@herald.ie

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