Ardfert man given four-year sentence for stabbing ex-partner in the head

An Ardfert man has been given a four-year sentence for stabbing his ex-partner in the head.

30-year-old Damien Fealy, currently of no fixed abode, was previously found guilty by a jury of four assaults on Vanessa Begley at locations in both Tralee and Killarney between March of 2018 and January of this year.

He was also found guilty of producing a knife during one of the assaults.

Damien Fealy assaulted Vanessa Begley four times between March 2018 and January 2019 at different Kerry addresses.

During one of the assaults, Mr Fealy broke through the door, caught her by the hair, banged her head against the wall four times, tried to choke her and then stabbed her in the head.

He assaulted a former housemate who tried to intervene during another one of the assaults.

Mr Fealy was also found guilty of an assault in Clogherbrien on the 14th January 2019 as Ms Begley was driving him to Tralee for a court appearance; he stabbed her with a biro and hit her with a wheel brace during this assault.

Sergeant Gary Carroll told the court Mr Fealy committed a “remarkably similar assault” on a previous partner; he had kept her imprisoned in their home and beat her with a hockey stick while their child was upstairs.

He received a five-year-and-eight-month sentence for those offences earlier this year.

Ms Begley, in her victim impact statement, said she has struggled to sleep since the incident and had suicidal thoughts; Sergeant Carroll praised her powers of recovery since the most recent assault.

Damien Fealy has 24 previous convictions in total and was due to be released from prison in September 2022 for the previous offences.

However, Judge Cormac Quinn imposed a number of sentences for the most recent offending, the longest being four years consecutive with the final 18 months suspended.