AN independent young woman visiting Cork for some concerts last Summer woke up in a tourist hostel to find a man in the dormitory sexually assaulting her.
“What was supposed to be a nice break turned into a nightmare,” the injured party said in a victim impact statement read to Cork Circuit Criminal Court on her behalf by Detective Garda Michelle Quinn.
While the woman was very upset and ended her visit to Cork, returning immediately to Dublin, she concluded her statement by saying that she had since come back to live in Cork and added, “Cork is great.”
The young woman said she always felt very independent and was happy to travel alone and stay in hostels but that the sexual assault had affected her.
“I felt shocked and disgusted,” she said.
Raymond Tkacenko of Castlewood, Little Island, County Cork, who had been staying at a number of tourist hostels on a relatively long term basis while working in Cork, pleaded guilty to committing the sexual assault on June 2 last year.
The Latvian, who is in his mid-thirties, has been living and working in Ireland for 11 years.
Garda Quinn said that when the victim woke to find Tkacenko rubbing her vagina outside her clothing she slapped him three times and told him to go away.
The defendant grinned at her and said, “Come on, people do a lot worse stuff than that.”
Garda Quinn said the defendant was questioned the following month and he admitted the sexual assault, said he was very sorry and that he had done it out of sexual desire.
Defence barrister, Donal O’Sullivan, said the defendant pleaded guilty as soon as possible and expressed remorse.
He had no previous convictions and this was entirely out of character, the barrister said.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said, “I am going to take this as a one-off aberration, it was opportunistic, taking advantage of a girl who was asleep.”
The judge imposed a 12-month suspended sentence on the accused.