UPDATE: To be released on 21st June, 2016.

May 2006

Fifteen years in jail for stab attack on pregnant partner


A man viciously stabbed his pregnant girlfriend and tried to suffocate her a day after the couple watched a movie depicting similar shocking brutality

Sean Walsh was jailed for 15 years yesterday for the brutal assault.

The 25-year-old Englishman had taken his girlfriend to see a film, ‘The Grudge’ – in which a husband strangles his wife and child – on November 8, 2004, Kilkenny Circuit Criminal Court heard.

Hours later, the girlfriend awoke to find the man she loved putting a pillow over her face.

The woman was also slashed with a knife, stabbed several times and head-butted.

In the bathroom of her house, a three-year-old girl was found unconscious with a pair of pink trousers tied around her neck.

At the time the woman believed that her daughter was dead. There was also a fracture to her daughter’s left elbow and bite marks to her body.

Walsh, of O’Loughlin Court, Kilkenny, but previously of Wigan who has been in custody since 2004, pleaded guilty to assault causing serious harm to a female

He also admitted endangering the life of a child at the same address and on the same date.

Defence counsel John Peart, SC, said the accused suffered from a behavioural dysfunction.

He already has psychiatric difficulties in his life and the incident was completely unpremeditated.

He said his client could describe what he had done but he could not explain it.

The court heard that Walsh had planned the attack and had admitted to ‘vivid and violent fantasies’ about following people at night with a knife.

He had also admitted to a psychiatrist that he had felt ‘a sense of relief and got a buzz’ after what he had done.

Det Gda Luke Kelly said Walsh had absconded when gardai arrived at the scene of the crime. When he was later located at St John’s Quay, he swam across the River Nore on two occasions to escape from officers.

He was later arrested at Kilkenny Castle Park.

Det Gda Kelly said the woman was very traumatised from the events and she still had very visible injuries to her neck from the knife slashes. If they were to be treated properly, she would have to undergo plastic surgery.

Judge Olive Buttimer said the seriousness of the occurrences could not be underestimated and could find no mitigating factor for his conduct as their relationship was not stormy and no alcohol or drugs were involved.

The judge said Walsh had vivid and elaborate fantasies of a violent nature of carrying a knife around at night following people.

She also said the accused seemed to take pleasure or excitement and felt a sense of relief and buzz afterwards.

She sentenced Walsh to 10 years for causing serious harm to Ms O’Carroll and five years for endangering the three-year-old girl.

Both sentences will run consecutively and will be backdated to the date when the accused was first taken into custody.

In 2006, Sean Walsh claimed his real name was child killer Robert Thompson and he was sent to live in Ireland under a false identity given to him on the orders of an English court.

Guards in Wheatfield Prison in, Dublin placed him under 24- hour surveillance for fear he would be “attacked by other inmates.

But the officers later rubbished the claim he is Thompson after checking his background with “their UK counterparts.