McCabe was no saint, ac­cuser tells tri­bunal

Irish Daily Mail - - News - By He­len Bruce he­len.bruce@dai­ly­

GARDA Sergeant Mau­rice McCabe was not a hero and a saint, and there was an­other side to him, the woman who ac­cused him of touch­ing her in­ap­pro­pri­ately as a child has told the Charleton Tri­bunal.

Miss D, who claims the garda touched her dur­ing a game of hide-and-seek in 1998, said through fre­quent tears that she had wanted to bury the al­leged abuse in the past.

But she said the me­dia at­ten­tion given to Mr McCabe in early 2013 as a whistle­blower caused her to be­come up­set and an­gry, and to want to tell her story to a jour­nal­ist. She said: ‘Ob­vi­ously I had a per­sonal griev­ance against him for what had oc­curred in 1998, and the com­plaint I made in 2006.

‘I had tried to deal with it, and I was try­ing to cope with it un­til he be­came a pub­lic fig­ure.

‘His face was ev­ery­where. He was be­ing de­scribed as a hero. It res­ur­rected feel­ings for me.

‘I was very up­set, very an­gry, and yes, I wanted peo­ple to know there was an­other side to him.

‘I wanted peo­ple to know he was not the saint he was be­ing por­trayed as, and so yes, I wanted to talk to some­one, to have my side of the story put out.’

Judge Peter Charleton, who is lead­ing the Dis­clo­sures Tri­bunal, has ruled that her iden­tity can­not be re­vealed.

The tri­bunal is try­ing to es­tab­lish if there was a smear cam­paign con­ducted by high-rank­ing gar­daí against Mr McCabe, who had blown the whis­tle on penalty points be­ing wiped and other al­le­ga­tions of Garda mal­prac­tice.

The tri­bunal has heard that Miss D had first made her al­le­ga­tion to so­cial work­ers when she was a teenager, in 2006. It con­cerned an al­leged sex­ual as­sault dur­ing a game at his fam­ily home when she was aged six or seven.

Gar­daí in­ves­ti­gated the claim at that time, and the DPP de­cided not to pros­e­cute due to in­suf­fi­cient ev­i­dence, which Miss D said she re­spected. She then re­peated the al­le­ga­tion as a young adult to Laura Bro­phy, a coun­sel­lor with Rian, in Ca­van, some years later.

Miss D ex­plained that she had gone for coun­selling in 2013 on the ad­vice of her mother, who was con­cerned the pub­lic­ity around Mr McCabe was caus­ing her emo­tional dis­tress. Miss D hoped the coun­selling would help her but ve­he­mently stressed that she had not wanted to make any fresh com­plaint against Mr McCabe, or have any­thing re­ferred to the Child and Fam­ily Agency, Tusla.

When Ms Bro­phy sug­gested a re­fer­ral might be nec­es­sary, she said it ‘got my back up’. ‘I said this case had al­ready been in­ves­ti­gated... I could not un­der­stand why it needed to be re­ferred. That was not my in­ten­tion,’ she said.

Dur­ing cross-ex­am­i­na­tion, Michael McDow­ell SC, for Mr McCabe, asked if Miss D was aware that fol­low­ing an in­ter­ven­tion by his client, dis­ci­plinary ac­tion was taken against her father, who was then moved from his role in crime in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

‘That was 11 months be­fore you first made an al­le­ga­tion against Mau­rice McCabe,’ he said. She replied: ‘That is cor­rect, yes.’

Miss D went on to say her 2013 meet­ings with Ms Bro­phy had ‘dragged up feel­ings’. ‘It brought up feel­ings of in­jus­tice about how my case had been han­dled,’ she said, adding that she walked out of a lec­ture be­cause Mr McCabe’s name came up in the con­text of pub­lic­ity around whistle­blow­ers.

The tri­bunal has al­ready heard that Ms Bro­phy ad­mit­ted then mak­ing a ‘cat­a­strophic’ ad­min­is­tra­tive er­ror, in which she ac­ci­den­tally cut and pasted an ac­cu­sa­tion made by a sep­a­rate client against a dif­fer­ent per­pe­tra­tor into a re­port she sent to so­cial work­ers in Au­gust 2013 de­tail­ing the al­leged abuse by Mr McCabe.

This more se­ri­ous claim was in­cluded in a no­ti­fi­ca­tion of sus­pected child abuse sent by the so­cial work­ers to gar­daí at Baile­boro, Co. Ca­van, where Mr McCabe worked, in May 2014.

Miss D said the first she knew of this was when her father, also a garda at Baile­boro, called her that month. She said he was ‘agi­tated’ and asked what she had told her coun­sel­lor. Her father told her he had seen a HSE re­fer­ral form, which al­leged that she had been dig­i­tally raped by Mr McCabe. ‘I was livid, up­set. I stressed I had never used those words. I never made that al­le­ga­tion,’ she said.

Mr McDow­ell said that due to the tri­bunal’s terms of the ref­er­ence he was un­able to cross-ex­am­ine Miss D about the cred­i­bil­ity of her 1998 al­le­ga­tion, which he said his client ‘ex­plic­itly de­nies’.

‘I was very up­set, very an­gry’ Miss D walked out of a lec­ture up­set

Tri­bunal: Mau­rice McCabe and his wife Lor­raine yes­ter­day

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