RACIAL ABUSE |
Garda who called taxi driver ‘Paki’, ‘scum’ and ‘a black c**t’ ordered to pay €5k to charity
Dillon O’Loughlin (26) had ordered a taxi to take him from Swords to Roganstown, but fell asleep and woke up in Blanchardstown
Today at 07:54
An off-duty garda assaulted a taxi driver, took his car keys off him and racially abused him, calling him “a Paki” and “a black c**t” after a dispute over payment of the fare, a court heard.
Dillon O’Loughlin (26) had ordered a taxi to take him from Swords to Roganstown in north county Dublin, but he fell asleep and woke up in Blanchardstown, and did not know where he was.
Judge Gerard Jones said O’Loughlin’s behaviour was “utterly reprehensible” and the taxi driver had been through a “terrible ordeal”.
The judge ordered O’Loughlin to donate €5,000 to charity and said he would strike out the matters.
Blanchardstown District Court heard the victim has initiated civil proceedings against the defendant and An Garda Síochána.
The defendant, of Castlefinn, Lifford, Co Donegal, admitted public drunkenness, threatening and abusive behaviour, assault and interfering with the mechanism of a car at Beechfield Avenue, Clonee on August 15, 2021.
GSOC Investigator Alan Walsh said O’Loughlin picked up a taxi at Main Street in Swords around 12.30am.
He fell asleep in the taxi and when he woke up there was a disagreement about the method of paying the fare.
Mr Walsh said O’Loughlin was verbally abusive, calling the taxi driver “a Paki”, “scum” and “a black c**t”.
O’Loughlin threatened to assault the taxi driver, and dashcam footage showed O’Loughlin’s arm near the victim’s chest.
Mr Walsh said the car keys were removed and O’Loughlin threatened the car would be seized.
In a victim impact statement, the taxi driver said he stopped driving a cab soon after this incident, because he was very afraid of what might happen when he saw gardaí.
He said O’Loughlin produced his garda badge and seized the car keys from him, and he had “suffered a lot since”.
He said the garda called him “black” and “a Paki”, and while he came from Kuwait and was neither, he believed these racial slurs were completely unacceptable.
Defence solicitor Simon Fleming said O’Loughlin had “paid a heavy price” for what had happened. He had been suspended from the gardaí, and the incident was greatly embarrassing for him.
Mr Fleming asked the judge to leave O’Loughlin without a conviction, saying his job would be gone if he received a conviction.