A judge has given a serving Garda charged with drink driving and careless driving an early trial date after being told that Gardai suspended from duty “face huge financial consequences”.
In the case before Ennis District Court, David Kenneally (41) of The Maples, Oakleigh Wood, Tulla Rd, Ennis is contesting three separate charges being brought against him that are alleged to have occurred at Abbey Street, Ennis on February 5th last year.
In court, State Solicitor for Co Limerick, Aidan Judge asked Judge Alec Gabbett that a trial date be fixed for late-March or April of next year.
Mr Judge said that he was not available before then for the case in Ennis because of work commitments elsewhere.
Solicitor for Mr Kenneally, Daragh Hassett said that he could not consent to the case going back to next March or April.
Mr Hassett said that Mr Kennally is a serving member “and because of these charges he is not working”.
He said: “We are all well aware that members who are suspended face huge financial consequences.”
He added: “I couldn’t consent to a trial eight months away – it is a district court summary matter. I am very clear, I am not prepared to allow a District Court trial to go back eight months.”
Judge Gabbett said that he would fix a date for January 8th next at Ennis District Court.
In the case, Mr Kenneally is charged with drink-driving at Abbey Street, Ennis on February 5th 2022 contrary to Section 4 of the Road Traffic Act.
Mr Kenneally is also charged with driving without due care and attention at the same location on the same date contrary to Section 52 of the Road Traffic Act.
Mr Kenneally is also facing a summons of consuming intoxicating liquor with the intention to frustrate a prosecution under Section 4 of the Road Traffic Act at Abbey Street, Ennis on February 5th 2022 contrary to Section 18 (3) of the Road Traffic Act.
The contested case was initially specially fixed for July 25th last and Mr Judge told the court on that date that the State is to call 12 witnesses in the case.
The case was adjourned on that date after Mr Judge applied to seek an adjournment in the case as one of the prosecution witnesses was unavailable due to the death of his mother.
Mr Judge said that “the defence is insisting that I produce this witness and I have no option but to seek an adjournment”.