Baby batterer given a 13-year jail sentence

Darren Fagan.  Pic: Pacemaker Press
Darren Fagan. Pic: Pacemaker Press

A former Lurgan man man who punched a “defenceless” baby girl claiming he wanted to watch the X-Factor in peace was jailed today (Friday, June 9) for a total of 13-and-a-half years.

A judge at Belfast Crown Court branded Darren Fagan’s version of how the baby sustained the horrific brain injuries in October 2014 at her Bessbrook home as “cowardly, vindictive and shameful”.

Fagan (29), also formerly of Clonavon Avenue in Portadown, pleaded guilty to a single charge of causing grievous bodily harm with intent to the baby who was then aged just two years and four months.

A charge of attempted murder was “left on the books in the ususal terms”.

Fagan was also handed an extended custodial sentence of three years “for the protection of the public” after Judge Geoffrey Miller QC assessed him as posing a danger to society following the attack on the crying child in her cot.

He told Fagan that he would have to serve half his sentence before the Parole Commissioners would decide whether it was safe to release him back into the community.

If he was assessed as being safe to be freed from custody at that point, Fagan will spend a further nine years and three months on supervised licence by the Probation Service.