07 Aug 2022

'Totally unprovoked attack' on Prison Officer in The Midlands Prison Portlaoise

'Totally unprovoked attack' on Prison Officer in The Midlands Prison Portlaoise

A prisoner who assaulted a prison officer received a four month sentence at Portlaoise District Court on Thursday.

Celyn Eadan of the Midlands Prison Portlaoise was charged with assault of a Prisoner Officer there on September 1, 2020. He appeared in court via video link from the prison.

The court heard that he struck a prisoner officer, Michael Moore in the back of the head. He had handcuffs on him at the time.

The Victim Impact Report from the Prison Officer said that it was a completely “unprovoked attack.”

As a result he stated in the report that he was now more apprehensive and cautious. He had to stop going to the gym and was constantly on his guard. It added to his stress.

The court heard that Mr Eadan had 13 previous convictions, one of which was for manslaughter.

He had received a 16-year sentence for it, two of which were suspended.

Appearing for Mr Eadan, solicitor Philip Meagher said that the assault happened at a time when he had difficulties.

There was now light at the end of the tunnel. His release date was this September.

He had originally been convicted of murder, but this conviction had been found unsafe by the Supreme Court. A plea to manslaughter was subsequently accepted.

A number of conditions has been set out under which he was to abide for the term of the suspended part of the sentence of two years.

He had demonstrated an inability to control his emotional responses.

There was life for him now back in the community, and the interests of the community would be served by him engaging with the Probation Services. He is remorseful.

Judge Staines asked him why he assaulted the Prison Officer. Mr Egan replied that “all the prisoner officers were annoying me.”

Judge Staines said it was a “totally unprovoked attack.” It was an assault on a Prison Officer who was carrying out his duties.

She noted that he had pleaded guilty at the earliest opportunity and had apologised. However, he has to abide by the rules of the prison. She imposed a four month prison sentence and ordered that €500 be paid to the Prison Officer, Michael Moore. A recognisance of €100 was fixed in the event of an appeal.

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