A man who viciously attacked his ex-girlfriend in Donegal Town has been jailed for two years.
Martin Gormley used so much force that he broke the woman’s arm in three places when he came across her accidentally.
He began to verbally abuse her before launching into a vicious assault leaving her terrified and badly injured.
The court was told that when a crowd intervened to help the stricken woman that her attacker made off.
The 50-year-old fuel delivery driver from Meenatully Road, Belleek, appeared at Donegal Town Circuit Court where he amditted the cowardly attack.
Judge John Aylmer said the defendant had not only physically harmed his victim but that she had suffered significant psychological and emotional trauma as result of her ordeal.
Gormley’s victim was on a night out with friends in Donegal Town on July 13 2015 when her ex-boyfriend approached her in the street and began verbally abusing her and another woman.
The two women tried to drive off but as they did, the accused jumped into the rear of the car.
There he grabbed his ex-girlfriend by her hair and began punching her repeatedly in the face.
She managed to get out of the car but a raging Gormley followed her and continued to attack her.
He threw her to the ground where she landed on her arm and shoulder, causing three fractures to her humerus bone.
A medical report revealed that as well as a broken arm, the woman has developed post traumatic arthritis which has inhibited her ability to work and to exercise.
In her victim impact statement she said she had believed Gormley when he told her he loved her.
But after being attacked, she was no longer the confident, social woman she once was.
She said the shame and humiliation of having to tell her family and friends about what happened had taken a toll on her. She was off work for three months due to her injuries and can no longer operate to the same capacity she once could.
Following the assault Gormley, who has 22 previous convictions, fled the jurisdiction. He was only apprehended when a European Arrest Warrant was issued for his arrest.
Prior to Friday’s sentencing hearing, the defendant had offered compensation of €7,500 to his victim. It was not enough to keep him out of prison however.
Judge John Aylmer noted that Martin Gormley was the main carer for his elderly mother. He also plays an active role in the lives of his two daughters. But apart from those factors and a number of references handed into the court, there was very little else in terms of mitigating circumstances.
“He attacked his victim in a public street, threw her to the ground where she suffered a serious three-part fracture of her left humerus and as a result suffers ongoing disabilities. In addition she has emotional and psychological sequelae.
“ I therefore place this in the mid-range of this type of offending and it merits two and a half years in prison,” said the judge.
John Aylmer said he had been asked to impose a non-custodial sentence. But a message has to be sent out that such crimes will not be tolerated, he ruled.
“The court takes the view that this is too serious to be dealt with non-custodially,” he said.
Given the prison sentence, Gormley was asked if his offer of €7,500 in compensation was still on the table. The accused opted to withdraw the cash in light of the fact his victim is pursuing him through the civil court for damages.