Sunday 23 October 2016

'Multitasking' gran held on to pram while kicking a man to the ground


O'Connell Street
O'Connell Street

A 'multitasking' grandmother who repeatedly kicked a man on the ground as she held on to a pram has been given a suspended sentence.

Michelle Conroy (47), of Arch Court, Roscommon Town, Co. Roscommon, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to violent disorder at Lower O'Connell Street, Dublin, on December 27, 2012. She has 14 previous convictions.

Judge Desmond Hogan had previously adjourned sentencing in July after hearing the evidence in order to prepare a probation report.

He said she had shown a "blatant disregard for the public". He remarked that she had been "multitasking" as she kicked Michael Joyce on the ground while also holding a pram containing a small child.

Conroy was due to be sentenced on Monday but failed to show up in court. A bench warrant was issued for her arrest but cancelled when she appeared yesterday.

Judge Hogan imposed a two-year sentence, suspended in full for two years. He noted a probation report which stated Conroy was at a moderate risk of re-offending.


Garda Michael Galligan told Tony McGillicuddy BL, prosecuting, that CCTV footage showed Mr Joyce walking into Londis on Lower O'Connell Street as a group of two men and three women with two young children walked towards the shop.

The two men had their faces covered and Kathleen Sweeney, daughter of Conroy, went into the shop and pushed Mr Joyce out onto the street. The group then set upon Joyce and kicked and punched him on the ground.

Conroy was seen kicking Mr Joyce at least eight times as he lay on the ground. The males had knives and were attempting to stab him, but Conroy was not involved in that. Mr Joyce managed to get to his feet and flee. Gardai were alerted and an ambulance was called.

Gda Galligan agreed with defence counsel, Brian Gageby BL, that the kicks Conroy landed would not have been "damaging". He said she was pushing a pram with a child in it and had one hand on the pram as she was kicking the man.

Mr Gageby said Conroy was a mother of nine and her troubles stemmed from those of her children who were involved in drugs and criminality.

He said she had been under the misguided illusion that she was protecting her children.

Mr Gageby said she had suffered psychiatric difficulties and had moved to Roscommon shortly after this incident.

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