Wednesday 13 December 2017

I'll rip off your head - murderer's chilling threat to prison guard


Jeffrey Dumbrell
Jeffrey Dumbrell

A "notorious" convicted murderer threatened to rip the head off a prison officer - leaving the man fearing for his life, a court has heard.

Jeffrey Dumbrell (35), who is serving a life sentence, was being held in a high-security segregation unit at the time but has since moved to a wing with a number of other prisoners.

Garda Stephen Cullen told the prosecution that the prison officer was in an office in the segregation unit when Dumbrell stormed in.

Dumbrell tried to pick up a chair, but was stopped and was very aggressive.

He told the man: "If you ever get smart with me through the gate, I will rip your fucking head off."

The following day there was another verbal exchange after the prison officer noticed Dumbrell pacing in an agitated state.

The prison officer said he would take any threats from Dumbrell very seriously.

He said he felt stressed and was looking over his shoulder ever since. He felt his life was in danger.

The court heard the prison officer did not wish to attend court or complete a victim impact statement.

Gda Cullen agreed with the defence that Dumbrell was a "notorious prisoner".

He agreed that until recently, Dumbrell and one other prisoner had been held in an "extra- high security unit" manned by a group of dedicated prison officers in Wheatfield Prison.

Dumbrell, formerly of Emmet Road, Inchicore, Dublin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to making threats to kill a prison officer at Wheatfield Prison on December 10, 2014.

He has 10 previous convictions, including ones for murder, assault and larceny.


The defence said he was instructed that the guilty plea was motivated by remorse and Dumbrell's desire to show he was capable of change. He submitted that Dumbrell had shown signs of progress.

He said his client had for a long time been in something akin to solitary confinement but now found that by co-operating with the prison authorities he was in a far better situation.

Judge Karen O'Connor adjourned sentencing until this morning.

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