Monday, July 18, 2022

Isabel Hayes

A man who killed his mother in 2011 has been jailed for 16 months for assaulting a support worker shortly after his release from prison.

Celyn Eadon (30) pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to one count of assault causing harm to the support worker at his home address at Annaly Grove, Ongar, Dublin on January 14th.

The court heard Eadon was convicted of murdering his mother, Noreen Kelly, in 2014 but this conviction was later quashed and he pleaded guilty to her manslaughter. He was jailed for 10 years, backdated to when he first went into custody in 2011.

Upon his release from the Midlands Prison in September 2021, Eadon was assigned support workers to help him live to independently and he was placed in accommodation provided by the Peter McVerry Trust.

The court heard on Monday that Eadon got on very well with his support worker, who was “fond” of him.

Attack

Garda Simon Cadam told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that on the day in question, the support worker and a female colleague visited Eadon in his apartment. They were discussing films when “out of the blue” Eadon attacked the support worker, punching him a number of times to the face.

When the other support worker shouted at Eadon, telling him who it was he was punching, he released the man immediately. Gardaí were called and he was arrested.

Other that the manslaughter conviction, Eadon has eight previous convictions for assaults while in prison and other minor offences, the court heard. The support worker declined to make a victim impact statement.

Trigger

Padraig Dwyer SC, defending, said the support worker was discussing the film ‘Scream’, which “triggered a loss of control” in Eadon.

He said his client suffered an acquired brain injury as a result of “enormous” drug abuse when he was still a teenager, adding that this attack “came out of the blue”.

He said Eadon wished to apologise to his support worker, who was “extremely kind and supportive” to him.

“There is no reason why he committed this act,” Mr Dwyer said, adding that there was no prior hostility between the pair.

Eadon, who appeared via video-link, interrupted court proceedings a number of times to assert he only punched his support worker once.

Mr Dwyer said Eadon has had to live his life with the knowledge that he killed his mother. He said the killing occurred in a situation where Eadon was heavily intoxicated on drugs and was of the belief that his mother had been replaced by aliens.

The court heard that after killing his mother, Eadon ran across the boglands beside the family home, believing he was being pursued by aliens.

Defence counsel said Eadon was institutionalised after spending a decade in prison from a young age, and required support in order to live independently.

Sentencing him, Judge Martin Nolan said Eadon had a complicated history involving excessive drug-taking. He said the attack in question was a “pretty vicious assault”, which left the injured party with facial swelling and which was carried out “for some irrational reason”.

The judge took into account a number of mitigating factors, including Eadon’s guilty plea, cooperation with gardaí and expressions of remorse.

He handed down a two-and-a-half year sentence and suspended the final 14 months on a number of conditions. He backdated the sentence to when Eadon went into custody in January this year.

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