November 2001

Former pupil dismayed as teacher convicted on sex charges walks free

A man who had been sexually assaulted by his teacher expressed his disappointment as the accused walked free from court yesterday.

David Lowry (69) of Rose Lawn Close, Castleknock, Dublin pleaded guilty to six sexual assault charges against six boys, five of them former pupils, under the Offences Against the Person Act at a Dublin District Court.

He was given a six-month prison sentence by Judge David Anderson. But the sentence was suspended for three years provided he did not get involved in similar incidents again.

Speaking after the case, one of the victims, who is now middle-aged, said he was disappointed at the sentence, but he was glad the public would know who this man was and what he had been capable of doing.

“I was worried that he could carry on and lead a normal life like nothing had happened. He was able to stand up by the altar in his local church and give out Holy Communion that’s not right.”

The accused had originally faced two separate sexual assault charges which related to his time teaching at a north Dublin school between 1957 and 1959 and at a midlands school between 1967 and 1970.

However, the court heard that four further sexual assault complaints had been made against Mr Lowry as a result of the press coverage the case had received.

Three of these complaints were made by former pupils who attended the north Dublin school. The accused was eventually charged with sexual assault against six people.

The court heard that since the case began in October 1999, the 69-year-old had been receiving ongoing treatment at the Granada Institute, which he had attended up to three times a week.

Investigating officer Sgt Mary Diskin of Dun Laoghaire Garda Station told the judge she was satisfied there would be no further complaints against Mr Lowry.

Judge Anderson indicated he would take into consideration that Mr Lowry had done everything that the previous judge had asked of him, and that the report supplied by the Granada Institute was excellent.