Convicted rapist sentenced to three years for entering Killarney premises

A convicted rapist has been sentenced to three years for entering a premises in Killarney with intent to commit a theft.

Appearing before Tralee Circuit Criminal Court, 35-year-old James Cronin, of Freemount, Rathmore, entered a guilty plea to the offence at 11 Avenue Holiday Village, Killarney on September 8th, 2017.

In delivering the sentence Judge Patrick Meghan said, considering the mitigating factors, one year of the three year sentence would be suspended for a period of three years.

The court heard on the night in question the accused – who has 11 previous convictions including rape, false imprisonment, attempted rape and sexual assault – was intoxicated when he entered the premises.

Defence barrister Katie O’Connell said the defendant was unsteady on his feet, disorientated and had soiled himself.

The court heard the accused proceeded to a bedroom where a man and woman were sleeping. The woman awoke, exclaiming  ‘what are you doing here’ to which Mr Cronin replied ‘I can’t find my way out’.

The woman led Mr Cronin out of the building. He was subsequently arrested by gardaí.

The court heard Mr Cronin has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and is on medication.

In his judgement, Judge Patrick Meghan took into account Mr Cronin’s early guilty plea, the apology furnished and that no damage occurred and no violence was inflicted.

He sentenced Mr Cronin to three years imprisonment, backdated to September 8th, 2017, with the final year suspended for a period of three years.