Monday 24 October 2016

Activist 'tried to rile up' abortion demo

Shane O'Brien
Shane O'Brien

A PRO-CHOICE activist was arrested for using "incendiary words" as a pro-life anti-abortion rally approached his group in Dublin city centre.

Shane O'Brien (24) was heard saying "Will we kick it off?" and "Attack the pro-lifers", Dublin District Court was told.

Sgt John Brady said a pro-life demonstration was about to pass a counter pro-choice protest. Gardai were checking an- other man's bag at the time.

"I heard Mr O'Brien say to the person beside him: 'It's going to kick off, will we kick it off?'" said the officer.

Sgt Brady identified himself, but four times O'Brien approached the garda searching the other man. When told to leave, he stamped his foot on the ground, "building up aggression levels" and mutter- ing "Attack the pro-lifers, attack the guards".

"He seemed to be trying to rile people up," Sgt Brady said.

O'Brien went to the ground and struggled during arrest.

He denied using "incendiary" words and told the court he was only trying to see why a man was being searched.

He alleged that Sgt Brady told him to "f**k off" and pushed him. He said he then tried to rejoin the crowd and was pulled from behind to the ground by the gardai.

O'Brien, of Kempton Avenue, Navan Road, Dublin 7, denied breach of the peace and failing to obey gardai at O'Connell Street on July 6, 2013.

Judge Bryan Smyth found him guilty and fined him €300.

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