A 79-year-old woman visiting her dying brother was attacked and robbed in the early evening outside her own home, sustaining injuries that have deprived her of her independence.
Marie Bullman was hospitalised for two months for injuries and was unable to attend her brother’s funeral after the attack on her.
Detective Garda Alan Johnson read her victim impact statement at Cork Circuit Criminal Court as Jonathan Duggan was sentenced to 14 years for several crimes.
“I was dropped to my home at 6.30 p.m. and walked up the path to the door. I was putting my key in the door when all I hear was two footsteps behind me and someone grabbing my bag and pulling it with one hand while grabbed me by the neck and shoulder and pushed me to the ground.
“I attempted to grab the window sill on my way down but I couldn’t. I couldn’t get up with the pain and began shouting for help. Two men passing by ran into to help me up off the ground and my neighbour called the ambulance and the gardaí.
“I spent two months in hospital. My injuries included four fractures to my pelvis. I had to learn how to walk again.
“I also had three broken ribs which were painful an affected by movement and breathing. My vocal chords and airway were damaged from the fall and due to deteriorating health. I had to undergo an operation to have a tracheotomy tube inserted into my neck so I could breathe properly again. I have this permanently now and it has severely affected my quality of life.
“I am now dependent on my family as I cannot manage my needs on my own. This attack has taken my independence and that cannot be forgiven.
“Due to my hospital stay I missed my brother’s funeral. He died two days after my attack. I also missed my grandson’s wedding two weeks after that.
“My attack has cost me financially, emotionally and has cost me my good health.
“I have had to leave my home to live with my daughter and her family. I no longer see my friends and neighbours. I used to go to bingo weekly and go out socially but I can no longer do this.
“My vocal chords have closed and this may be permanent. I would like to thank my family who I could not manage without.”
Judge Brian O’Callaghan said the plea of guilty to the offences had spared the victims coming to court to give evidence.
Jonathan Duggan from Ballinderry Park in Mayfield in Cork, who already had 31 previous convictions for theft alone, pleaded guilty to robbing her of her handbag and its contents on October 22 2018.