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Garda fought knife mugger in city arrest

A FATHER of two who lunged at a garda with a knife when they tried to stop him mugging a man at a bus stop has been sentenced to detention.

Josh Magee (18) of Bowbridge Court, Kilmainham, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to attempted robbery of Brian Burke and production of a knife at Lower Rathmines Road, Rathmines on January 12, 2012.

The court heard that his previous convictions include two for the possession of knives.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring said it was a very serious offence and that she had concerns because of Magee's two previous knife convictions.

"The intervention of the gardai is your luck as well as Mr Burke's. You were clearly out of it and could have done very serious damage," Judge Ring said.

She sentenced Magee to three years detention but suspended the final 18 months on strict conditions including that he remains under probation supervision for two years.

Fear

Garda Leslie McCormack told Ronan Kennedy, prosecuting, that Mr Burke was sitting on the path waiting for a bus when Magee approached him and held a knife to his face.

The victim feared for his life but grabbed the mugger's wrist in attempt to move the knife away from him.

Gardai on routine patrol saw what was happening and came to Mr Burke's assistance shouting at Magee: "Gardai stop, gardai stop, drop the knife".

Gda McCormack took out her baton when Magee refused to drop the weapon. He continued to ignore her before lunging at her colleague with the knife pointed at his throat.

A struggle broke out but the gardai managed to restrain Magee, disarm him and bring him back to Terenue Garda Station.

Gda McCormack told Mr Kennedy that during the subsequent interview Magee said he regretted what he did and explained that he had drank eight cans of beer along with tablets.

"The effect they had was they switched off my brain," he told gardai.

Sandra Frayne, defending, told Judge Ring that his client's mother left the family home when he was six months old and he was brought up by his father and step-mother.

hnews@herald.ie