A 14-year-old boy from Dublin's north inner city appeared in court on Sunday charged with the brutal assault of Stephen Termini (57), from Buffalo, New York. More arrests are expected as the New Yorker remains in Beaumont Hospital with serious head injuries.
“The male juvenile arrested for the alleged offense contrary to the Non-Fatal Offences Against the Person Act, 1997 has been charged," a Garda spokesperson said on Sunday, July 23.
“The juvenile has appeared before a special sitting of the Children’s Court which was already held at the Criminal Courts of Justice this afternoon.”
The boy will appear before the Children’s Court again later this week.
Termini's son, Michael Rizzuto, has said he has "faith" in the Irish police investigation. Their family set up a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for expenses during this "family emergency" which has already raised close to $95k. Rizzuto plans to travel to Ireland to be with his father.
Irish police believe there are at least three juveniles involved in the attack. The attack was carried out by a "number of people" on Talbot Street on Wed, July 19. Termini was brought to hospital in a serious but stable condition at around 10.40 pm.
On their GoFundMe page, Michelle, Termini's sister, wrote that her brother may lose his eye due to his injuries.
Stephen Termini had worked odd jobs for a year, saving every penny to visit Ireland, trace his family heritage and enjoy the music and culture. Speaking to RTE radio Michael Rizzuto said "Last time I spoke to him he was saving up every penny, doing odd jobs to get over to Ireland.
“He was talking about playing music in Ireland. That’s where he wanted to be so it really sucks what happened to him.”
"He would give you the shirt off his back, he's a very good man."
"We just feel helpless at the moment. His sister lives about 10 hours away from me in a different state. My brother and I are trying to come up with a plan so we can all fly over. Even though we can't do anything, we can try to be there with him at least"
Irish politicians have condemned the attack. Speaking on RTÉ’s "This Week" program, Social Democrats politician for Dublin Central, Gary Gannon, said that more Gardaí were needed in the inner city.
“We have fallen below 14,000 Gardaí in the state. But we still have to allocate that provision of Gardaí based on where we need the most,” he said.
“I can’t imagine a place where we need more Garda presence than in the central part of our capital city. At a very minimum people have a right to go into the city center for whatever purpose they may need, and feel safe,”
Dublin City Councillor Niall Ring said that the attack on the tourist has “appalled everyone in the area”.
“The fact that it took place within yards of the busiest Garda station in the country, makes it even more disturbing."
The police investigation is ongoing.