A man has pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of four young children in Wicklow two years ago. 

Stephen Harnett, 37, from Blainroe in Co Wicklow, pleaded guilty to attempting to murder the children on 3 June 2016.

He was remanded in custody and will be sentenced on 8 October. 

The court heard Harnett attempted to strangle two of the children, and left them when he thought they were dead.

He moved on to the two older children who fought back and escaped through a window.  

One child was unconscious when paramedics arrived.

Harnett's defence counsel, Patrick Gageby asked Mr Justice Michael White to remand his client on continuing bail.

He said he had to get a report on Harnett's psychiatric condition and this would be more difficult while he was in custody.

He said Harnett was already abiding by very stringent bail conditions, including conditions relating to psychiatric care, and was willing to accept further conditions.

Mr Justice Michael White remanded him in custody, after hearing evidence from investigating garda, Detective Sergeant Fergal O'Brien.

The judge said he was "strongly of the view" that Harnett should go into custody to await sentencing.