Victim lost “my right to feel safe in my own home” after night break-in By Fiona Ferguson
A man who raped a 19-year-old woman after breaking into her home armed with a crowbar while she slept has been given a 12 year sentence with the final two years suspended.
Daryl McCarthy (29) first orally raped the young woman and when she told him she did not want to have sex raised the crow bar and threatened her: “Do you want a smack of this?”
The Central Criminal Court heard that the victim is still deeply effected by the offences and has moved from her home in an effort to feel safe.
“But it was not an intrusion on a point on a map,” she said, “it was not a matter of geography, my body was the crime scene.”
McCarthy of Whitechapel Crescent, Blanchardstown, pleaded guilty to rape, oral rape and aggravated burglary at the victim’s home, on December 2, 2019.
McCarthy was last week sentenced by Ms Justice Tara Burn via video link from prison where he is in isolation due to illness.
Ms Justice Burns said the victim impact statement had been “heart-breaking” in outlining how the young woman had been preparing to start a new life after leaving her family home but instead was violated in this manner in what was supposed to be a safe place.
“The concept that someone safely at home and in comfort of own bed finds them subjected to this kind of violation is beggars’ belief,” said Ms Justice Burns. She said the offences were “absolutely and utterly dreadful.”
She noted McCarthy said he was extremely intoxicated and had very little recall of events. She said it was nonetheless behaviour of the absolute upmost gravity.
She said the aggravating factors included the extremely serious nature of the sexual acts perpetrated on the woman despite her protestations and breaking into a woman’s home at night with a crow bar.
She noted in mitigation McCarthy’s good work history, that he is spoken of highly by his current partner and has no relevant previous convictions.
Ms Justice Burns set a headline sentence of 14 years, which she reduced to 12 years taking into account his guilty plea and remorse. She said in light of the probation report she had received she would suspend a further two years on condition he comply with it’s recommendations.
The conditions of the suspension include offence focused work, following directions of the probation service and not having any direct or indirect contact with the injured party.
She thanked the injured party for attending and said while she is clearly going through a very difficult period she hopes she could manage to get back to her dreams in relation to her career.
In her victim impact statement the woman described how she had been terrified and paralysed with fear during the attack. She continues to suffer effects such as flashbacks, nightmares, PTSD and panic attacks.
She said the exciting life she had been building for herself prior to the attack, now feels foreign and she can hardly remember it. She told the court she had to move from her home and spoke of becoming increasingly lonely.
“I lost my right to feel safe in my own home” she said, describing how she had installed alarms and sensors. She outlined how she had moved away to continue her studies as she did not feel safe.
She said until McCarthy’s recent guilty plea she had been undergoing anxiety inducing and traumatic preparation for a trial. She said McCarthy had destroyed her life and put her family through hell, leaving a permanent scar seared onto her life.
“He had multiple opportunities to stop what he was doing but he chose not to,” she said.