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Puck Fair reveller groped me says garda

A GARDA who alleges she was sexually assaulted at the Puck Fair said she could not bring herself to attend a sexual assault unit.

The garda said that on the night the alleged offence took place she was "a 25-year-old woman and not a garda".

"I've taken women to the sexual assault treatment unit in Cork and the thought of me going myself was horrendous. It was very hard for me to accept being the injured party in this regard," she told Tralee Circuit Criminal Court.

Cyril Moriarty (53) of Tulligbeg, Killorglin, Co Kerry, denies groping the garda at Upper Bridge Street, Killorglin during Puck Fair on August 13, 2010.

The garda claims he caught her in the vaginal area when she was attempting to arrest him.

"I saw his hand go down in between my legs. He caught hold of my vaginal area and began to squeeze it. "I was horrified someone could do this to me and I tried to move his hand but he just squeezed harder. I could feel his fingers digging into me," she said.

The garda said she had been horrified and was not able to return to work for four months.

"I saw the aggression on his face and when I tried to push him away he just squeezed tighter.

"I was screaming and roaring crying and I was embarrassed about the way I was being assaulted and I didn't want to cry out for help."

The garda, who was on temporary transfer to Killorglin for the Puck Fair said all she wanted to do was get as far away from Killorglin and this man as she could.

The garda said she had been "totally traumatised" by the incident and all she wanted to do was go home. She said that when she was finally free she was hysterical and crying and although members of the public and some of her garda colleagues attempted to comfort her, she just wanted to be alone.

Under cross examination by Brian McInerney, BL, for the accused, she said she had not sought medical attention or thought to keep her bloodstained underwear as evidence because she was not accepting she had been sexually assaulted.

"I was a 25-year-old woman when I went home that night. I was not a garda and I did not have my garda hat on me and I wasn't thinking about collecting evidence," she said.

The following day she was examined by a doctor who found "no obvious injuries", the court heard.

hnews@herald.ie