Damien Quinn leaving Limerick Circuit Court [picture: Press 22]
A VIOLENT criminal who held a knife to the throat of a man as he sat in his car is beginning a lengthy prison sentence.
Damien Quinn, aged 34, who has an address at O’Malley Park, Southill pleaded guilty to robbing a wifi dongle and €80 in cash from the man at Pery Square on March 17, last year.
During a sentencing hearing, Limerick Circuit Court was told Quinn had received a suspended prison sentence less than four months earlier after he admitted assaulting a prison officer while trying to escape from custody.
Judge Tom O’Donnell was told the victim, who is from County Galway, was sitting in his car when two men got into the vehicle. Quinn, who got into the back seat, held a knife to his throat while his accomplice demanded he hand over his money.
In a victim impact statement, the injured party, now aged 55, said he has lost confidence while driving late at night or while parking up as a result of what happened.
“I am always in fear of what might happen,” he said.
Detective Garda Paul Crowley said the defendant, who has a large number of previous convictions, was identified as a suspect from CCTV footage and made admissions following his arrest a number of weeks later.
Imposing sentence, Judge O’Donnell commented the offence was premeditated and he said Quinn’s propensity for violence and his previous record were a concern.
The judge noted the 34-year-old had an extremely difficult upbringing and was abused as a child.
He commented that while the victim was not physically injured during the robbery, it was extremely frightening for him.
He imposed a six year prison sentence, suspending the final year for six years. No order was made in relation to the suspended prison sentence.
Previously another man – 21-year-old Christopher Higgins – was sentenced to six year’s imprisonment with the final two years suspended for his role in the same offence.