A BARMAID struck in the face by a bottle thrown during a commotion outside a pub had unfortunately been the victim of a criminal act because she wanted a "good look" at the incident, a High Court judge said.
Mr Justice Iarfhlaith O'Neill made the comment when he dismissed an action for damages by Amanda Connolly (25), Shancastle Park, Clondalkin, Dublin, against her former employer, Finches Grey Goose pub in Neilstown, Clondalkin. The incident happened on St Patrick's weekend 2010 (March 18) when Ms Connolly said she went outside around closing time for a smoke break.
The court heard her two front teeth were damaged, another broken and she also sustained a cut over her left eye when she fell to the ground after being struck with the pint cider bottle, a type that is only sold in pubs.
The judge said it had been argued the pub had a duty of care not to allow customers to take out partly consumed bottles of cider, but the evidence had been that there was a practice of allowing them do so with bottle caps being given out to allow the vessels to be recapped for takeout.
There was no evidence of any trouble inside the pub that night and therefore no reason not to allow customers recap bottles, he said.
Any duty of care to pub workers did not extend to what happened outside the pub, he said. "Such a duty would be impossible to perform", he said.
There was evidence of commotion some distance down the road from the pub with a garda car present and CCTV footage had shown Ms Connolly "more or less running or moving very rapidly towards the commotion", he said.
She did more than "just stop at the front door for her smoke break", he said.
"She went much further than that and went a significant distance to have a good look at this incident and unfortunately became the victim of a criminal act."
The judge also dismissed her action against a firm which provided security for the pub, JM Management Services, Delgany, Co Wicklow, saying no case had been made out against it.
In her action, Ms Connolly claimed the defendants were negligent by failing to provide her with a safe place of work and failing to ensure customers were not served with alcohol to such a degree as to make them unruly and inebriated.
She also claimed there was a failure to disperse the crowd and ought to have known that such an incident was likely to occur.
The claims were denied.
Following the incident, Ms Connolly was taken by ambulance to hospital where she received stitches for the cut over her left eye.
She also attended the Dental Hospital the next day where root canal and crown work was carried out on her teeth.
The work is temporary and will need to be replaced at intervals in the future, she said.
The court heard there had been another incident in Finches the previous St Patrick's Day in which bottles and glasses were flung at customers and staff.
Ms Connolly said during that incident, she had to pull a female colleague behind the bar to provide cover from the missiles.