‘It’s not over’ – parents of boys scarred for life in horror Waterford acid attack vow to fight for justice
The parents of the three boys scarred for life following a horrific acid attack in Waterford last April have vowed to continue their fight for justice for their children.
The families today revealed they have contacted the authorities asking for an “urgent meeting” after news broke yesterday that two of the attackers will only receive a juvenile caution.
The boys’ parents came together for the first time today to express their dismay at that decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).
One of the victims’ father, Martin Daly, said he is “not going to give up”.
He added: “We gave them eight months to provide us with answers. If I have to go fight to get answers, I’ll fight for them. It not over, definitely not.”
Irish underage soocer player Tega Agberhiere (pictured below and bottom), Oisin Daly and Waterford hurler Padraig Sullivan were viciously set upon by a group of four teenagers at Earlscourt Estate on the Dunmore Road at 11pm on April 28.
As well as being the victim of a physical assault, the three boys were doused in a corrosive liquid causing them third-degree burn leaving them disfigured for life. Horrific new pictures of the boys’ injuries after the attack were published on social media today as the parents were interviewed by RTÉ Joe Duffy.
Tega’s mother Christie Agberhiere told Joe: “His life had been destroyed and no one has been held accountable.”
Martin Daly said there are still holes in his son Oisin’s back “from where the acid has burnt in through the skin”.
Padraig’s mother Shirley Sullivan added: “He had to spend 24 hours in a shower to get the acid off. Every time he came out the shower he had to go back in the levels of acid were that high.”
Christie was understandably upset and emotional. Her son Tega received the most visible scars after the attackers doused the deadly substance on his head.
“They are scarred for life,” she told Joe. “He is going to live with this every day of his life- this is for a lifetime for him.”
Oisin’s father Martin said he was perplexed at the decision not to prosecute the attackers: “It was shocking news to hear it on Monday. I can’t believe we waited eight months for a decision of this nature. It’s madness.
“There was more than acid there to this attack, someone had a baseball bat as well. Someone premeditated goes and gets a bottle of acid and actively goes and throws it in someone’s face, throws it all over someone’s back and then throws it all over someone’s leg – is that’s a juvenile action? These are not 12-year-olds we are talking about, they are 16 or 17.
“They (the attackers) have gone into the whole detail of how to concoct a chemical based solution that has given three young men scarring for life with third-degree burns – then admitted that offence. Now they have only been given a caution?
“If anyone can sit down and explain how that makes sense to me – it doesn’t make any sense,” Martin added.
Padraig’s mother Shirley said she feels very let down by the system. She also told how Padraig, who hurls underage with Waterford, has to give up the sport to allow his injuries to heal.
“It’s been a hard year for Padraig and the two boys and to hear just two weeks before Christmas that there will be no justice served – it’s just not right,” she added.
“I’m still in shock. I can’t get my head around this. I have never seen anything like this before with the justice system. For this sort of crime to happen and this is the hand they get – I’m just worried this is sending out the wrong signal.
“Because of this attack, he can’t go back to the hurling for two years. Padraig got it all to his thigh and calf and the heel of his foot and has three skin grafts where the burns are,” Shirley added.