Dublin rapist Andrew McCarthy’s release sparks concerns over public safety

The release of rapist Andrew Mc Carthy has triggered questions around the adequacy of sentencing and the potential risks posed to society. 

Andrew McCarthy has been released from Arbour Hill prison after serving just nine years of a 12-year sentence.

McCarthy was convicted for a systematic campaign of rape and grooming against his partner’s daughter.

Mr Justice Paul Carney suspended the final three years of a 15 year sentence on the condition that McCarthy stay away from the victim and undergo 18 months of post release supervision.

McCarthy, originally from Saggart, County Dublin, was sentenced in 2015 for 11 counts of sexual assault of the child between May 2006 and January 2011. 

His depraved acts began when the victim was just nine years old, escalating over seven years, including alcohol-fuelled abuse and photographing the assaults.

The abuse was discovered in March 2011 when the victim’s mother saw inappropriate messages on her partner’s Facebook account.

Andrew McCarthy

In the messages, McCarthy was telling the child that he loved her and would wait for her. In a victim impact report, the woman said that instead of being a father figure, McCarthy had instilled nothing but fear in her for ten years.

Amidst the controversy, concerns about public safety loom large, prompting a broader discourse on the effectiveness of post-release monitoring mechanisms and rehabilitation programs. 

Edana Flynn, an activist and Postgraduate Union Vice President at the University of Limerick said: “This case raised re-evaluation of the delicate balance between the rehabilitation of offenders and safeguarding society from potential threats. This reflects greatly on the judicial system and rehabilitation services.”

Tom Lewy, a student of public health at UL said: ”Such people should not be put out to the public. This is going to be a continuous traumatic reminder to the victim and the family. Knowing such criminals are put back with the rest of the communities, it is a shame to our judicial system policies.”

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