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27/07/2021

Teenager who recorded a stabbing on Snapchat to be sentenced later for assault

Teenager who recorded a stabbing on Snapchat to be sentenced later for assault

A teenager who recorded his accomplice stabbing a man on Snapchat has been remanded on bail pending sentence for assault.

Jason Finnegan (18) was with Mark Pidgeon (30) when they called to the flat of Kenneth Osbourne, who owed Finnegan €300 or €400.

Detective Garda Graham O’Neill told Elva Duffy BL, prosecuting, that Finnegan recorded the incident and captured the initial conversation between all three before it showed Pidgeon lash in the direction of the victim with a large knife and stab him a number of times.

Finnegan can be heard “shouting words of encouragement” such as “lash him, lash him out of it” and calls Mr Osbourne “a rat”, Det Gda O’Neill told the court.

He said the recording last for about 90 seconds before both leave the scene after Finnegan “alludes to the fact that they are on camera”, the detective continued.

The victim was later treated for multiple stab wounds including injuries to his arm which required surgery.

Finnegan of Kilworth Road, Drimnagh, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal to assault causing harm at Basin Street Flats on March 15, 2020.

Last January, Pidgeon of Bluebell Road, Bluebell was sentenced to three years in prison after he pleaded guilty to the same offence. He had 45 previous convictions including offences for production of knives.

Judge Karen O’Connor adjourned Finnegan’s case to June 4, next, and ordered a report from the Probation Service for that date.

She told Keith Spencer BL, defending, that she could not give any assurances on how she will proceed with the case but said she is impressed with progress Finnegan has since been making with various agencies in his local community.

“I have to mark the seriousness of the offending and the impact it had on the victim,” Judge O’Connor said before she added that she had to take into account that the victim suffered significantly and the fact that he (Finnegan) was recording the assault and taunting his accomplice to behave in a certain way.

Det Gda O’Neill said Mr Osbourne didn’t wish to make a victim impact statement and would not identify his attackers to gardaí. He told gardaí that he was attacked by two men and that he owed the younger man “a few bob”.

He said he was “terrified” and that “these guys tried to kill me and recorded the whole thing before putting it on social media”.

Det Gda O’Neill said the Snapchat recording and various CCTV footage from the area allowed them to identify Finnegan and Pidgeon.

He confirmed that Finnegan has no previous convictions and agreed with Mr Spencer that his client’s brother died in a tragic way in 2016.

Mr Spencer told Judge O’Connor that his client was “a very troubled young man with emotional issues who has recently been acting out in a manner which is violent and explosive”.

Counsel said that Finnegan has recently been engaging with various agencies in his local community who have “carved out paths for him in an attempt to help him”.

John Behan from the Youth Justice team at the Solas Project, told the court that Finnegan has been engaging with their project for a number of months.

“The contact has been coming from him. You can see he is trying to get help for himself,” Mr Behan said.

Mr Spencer submitted that Finnegan has “gone from being a person with no support to a person being targeted by agencies. He seems to be moving in the right direction. The green shoots of rehabilitation and recovery are there.”

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