herald

Saturday 3 December 2016

Garda lucky to be alive after driver sped off

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

A man who drove at speed while a garda was clinging to the open window of his car has been sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison.

Judge Keenan Johnson, who suspended the final two years of the sentence, said it was lucky that Gda John Walsh had not been killed or suffered life-changing injuries because of the actions of the accused.

Tommy Corcoran (22), of Ard na Mara, Cartron Point, Sligo, had pleaded guilty to endangerment and to possession of cannabis for the purpose of supply on April 19, 2013.

The judge told Sligo Circuit Court that society depended on gardai to keep law and order.

"Each of us as citizens owe a great debt to the gardai for the way they discharge their duties and put their lives on the line each time they are called out to investigate a complaint," he said.

Penalty

The judge said the court had to send out a clear message that people who endanger gardai "must suffer a severe penalty".

At an earlier hearing, the court heard that Gda Walsh, who has since been promoted to sergeant, had felt his life was in danger and had pleaded with the driver to stop.

The judge pointed out that Gda Walsh was off work for two months after the incident and was still suffering pain and receiving physiotherapy.

He suspended the final two years of the sentence subject to a number of conditions, including a requirement that the defendant provide urine samples to the Probation Service when required to make sure he remained drugs-free. The supply charge was taken into consideration

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