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Friday 17 August 2018

Victim caught man on camera after groping ordeal in Temple Bar

Bryan Doherty pleaded guilty
Bryan Doherty pleaded guilty

A health and safety officer has admitted groping a woman by putting his hand up her skirt as she walked home from work in Dublin city centre.

Bryan Doherty (36) was caught after the quick-thinking victim photographed him and gave the pictures to gardai.

Doherty had "a lot of drink taken" and did not know the woman who was walking through Temple Bar with headphones on when he attacked her in a "moment of madness".

Judge Brian O'Shea adjourned sentencing at Dublin District Court and remanded Doherty in custody.

The accused, originally from Co Mayo but with an address at Ashington Close, Navan Road, Dublin 7, pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting the woman in Cope Street on June 22 last year.

Judge O'Shea lifted earlier reporting restrictions on identifying Doherty.

Detective Garda Brendan Nolan told the court that the young woman was walking home alone from work through Temple Bar when she was approached from behind by Doherty.

The victim told gardai the accused "reached under her skirt and grabbed inside her underwear". The area the man grabbed was beside her vagina or beside that area, the court heard. The victim turned around in fright.

"This male proceeded to walk past her and the injured party followed the male and managed to take photographs of this male," Det Gda Nolan said.

A copy of one of the photos was handed to the judge who noted it was "clearly and undeniably" the accused.

Doherty was identified from the photos by a previous employer who assisted gardai in their inquiries, the court was told.

PANIC

The entire incident was also captured on CCTV footage.

The woman was in court but not required to give evidence.

A written victim impact statement was handed in to court. Judge O'Shea read this and said that she recalled Doherty had "forcibly grabbed" her.

She was now continually looking over her shoulder and had experienced moments of anxiety and panic, the judge said. The assault had impacted on her day-to-day life and she felt "violated, vulnerable and angry".

"I thought what might have happened if it was night-time or a more secluded area," she said in her statement.

The attack had affected her ability to trust new people.

Doherty had not come to garda attention since the incident. He had six previous convictions for motoring offences for which he had been given fines and bans, including two counts of attempting to drive while over the alcohol limit.

Defence solicitor Brian Kennan told Judge O'Shea he was instructed to convey his client's sincerest apology and it had been "a moment of madness".

Doherty could not remember the incident because he had taken a lot of drink. He said the accused had an alcohol addiction and was attending counselling.

Mr Kennan asked the judge to take the accused's early guilty plea into account.

Doherty had been the victim of an assault in which he suffered a broken jaw and when he was asked to go to Pearse Street Garda Station he thought it was in relation to that investigation.

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