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Man accused of city rape describes allegation as ridiculous

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A man charged with raping a schoolgirl in her friend’s house during a sleepover, told Gardai the girl’s allegation was “ridiculous” because he was “as good as impotent” at the time.

The 40 year old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has pleaded not guilty to raping the then 15-year-old Junior Certificate student at a house in the city on April 17, 2011.

Detective John Lavery told the jury at the man’s trial at the Central Criminal Court sitting in Galway, that when he put the girl’s allegation to him during interview, the man had replied, ” It’s all lies. I don’t know why she’s making it up.”

The accused man told Det. Lavery he could not remember if he had stayed in the house that night, claiming he could not remember dates.

Mr Alexander Owens, SC, prosecuting said the girl was brought to the sexual assault unit in August, 2011, four months after the alleged assault.

She was medically examined by a clinical forensic examiner who could not find evidence at that time to either support or preclude the rape allegation.

The trial continues next week before Mr Justice Barry White.

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Coming up on FYI Galway@5

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  • Contact tracing is being stopped in primary schools and childcare facilities from Monday. It means testing of asymptomtic close contacts will be discontinued. The changes do not include special education facilities.
  • Following the post mortem examination Gardai are treating the discovery of a body near the coast in Kinvara as a tragedy. Efforts are underway to identify the woman.
  • Sinn Fein MLAs are welcoming Joe Biden’s latest warning to Boris Johnson about risking peace in Northern Ireland, by tampering with the protocol.
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Galway City Councillor calls on Government to prioritise Mental Health in upcoming Budget

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A Galway city councillor is urging the Government to prioritise mental health services in the upcoming budget on the day that national organisation Mental Health Reform says Ireland’s mental health funding is almost half of what it should be.

It was envisaged that 10 per cent of Ireland’s health budget would be set aside for mental heath, but last year, just 5.1 per was actually allocated.

Labour’s Niall McNeilis says with one in four in our society set to experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives, it’s time to ensure that the nationally mental health policy is fully resourced.

The city councillor highlights that an increase in the number seeking treatment for eating disorders has led to longer waiting lists and anxiety for those seeking supports.

Councillor McNeilis says in his role as chairperson of local charity Let’s Get Talking he’s very aware that local mental health services must be funded to alleviate growing waiting lists – to hear more, tune in to FYI Galway@5

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€400,000 allocated to arts organisations across Galway city

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Arts organisations across Galway city are to benefit from grants totalling €400,000.

Over sixty artist-led organisations will share in the funding granted by Galway City Council.

Galway City Council says while its finances have been seriously affected by the pandemic, in recognition of the importance of contemporary arts to the city the local authority has made available the full arts budget as agreed before the COVID-19 crisis.

Galway International Arts Festival will receive the biggest allocation of €46,000 followed by Galway Arts Centre which will benefit from €35,000 in funding.

Druid Performing Arts Company has also been successful with €28,000 granted while €26,00 is on the way for Galway Music Residency.

Macnas, Galway Film Fleadh and Baboró International Arts Festival For Children have all been granted €19,000 to fund projects in the coming year.

Other recipents include Galway Theatre Festival, Galway Community Circus and Moonfish Theatre.

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