Tuesday 27 June 2017

'Blood everywhere after glassing at 30th birthday party'

Gerard Cervi pictured leaving the Four Courts after a Circuit Civil Court action. Pic: Collins Courts
Gerard Cervi pictured leaving the Four Courts after a Circuit Civil Court action. Pic: Collins Courts

Ray Managh

THERE was blood everywhere, on the floor and on the walls, when a man at a party in a residents club was glassed in the face by an “unknown psychopath,” a judge has been told.

Anthony Cervi, who had to have 10 stitches in his face, was giving evidence in support of a claim in the Circuit Civil Court by his brother, Gerard Cervi, whose left hand had been gashed in the attack.

Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke heard the glassing of both brothers happened at a 30th birthday party attended by about 100 people in Grange Woodbine Residents Association Club in December 2009.

Edward Higgins, who had thrown the 30th birthday party for a friend, told barrister John Nolan, counsel for the club, that there were tables and chairs being thrown and “people hitting each other left, right and centre.”

Higgins told Mr Nolan, who appeared with Newman Solicitors, that he had been meeting and greeting party-goers and there had been an exchange of verbals for a number of minutes between two men who had bumped into each other on the floor.

“Then a guy came over and grabbed Anthony Cervi, picked him up and crashed him off the wall.  He tried to break his back off it,” Higgins said.

Anthony Cervi pictured leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins Courts
Anthony Cervi pictured leaving the Four Courts. Photo: Collins Courts

He said the unknown assailant had the neck of a broken bottle in his hand and had pushed it several times into Anthony Cervi’s face.  Part of Anthony’s face skin had been hanging off.

Gerard Cervi, a 30-year-old steel fixer, of Russell Avenue, East Wall, Dublin 3, who sued the Grange Woodbine Club, said the man with the glass had also attempted to hit him in the head.  He put up his left hand to save himself and had been struck between his index finger and thumb.

Anthony Cervi said: “There was blood everywhere.  I was bleeding and I remember being covered in blood.  There was blood on the walls and on the floor.  I was taken to hospital by ambulance and had to have 10 stitches in my face.”

All of the witnesses said there were only one security man, a club member, on duty.  They said an adequate security presence could have sorted out the initial verbals and avoided the assault.  Anthony Cervi told Mr Nolan the incident happened out of the blue and no-one could have foreseen it happening.

Judge Groarke, dismissing Gerard Cervi’s €60,000 damages claim against the club, said it did not appear to him that it would be reasonable to determine that the assault on him was either foreseeable or expected. 

The judge said the club had such a good and peaceful reputation that it may have been lulled into a false sense of security.  It would not, however, be reasonable to expect it to have anticipated that a person, who had been described as psychopathic, would have emerged to repeatedly assault Mr Cervi and his brother.

He made no order as to costs against Gerard Cervi.

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