independent

Wednesday 16 April 2014

Clongowes pupils joined 20-man brawl

Evan Lewis leaving Dublin Circuit Criminal Court
Evan Lewis leaving Dublin Circuit Criminal Court

TWO rugby players from a prestigious private school will be sentenced next week over a mass brawl that left a youth with a broken leg.

Scott Flood-Wiley (21) and Evan Lewis (22) were out celebrating their school, Clongowes Wood College, winning the Leinster Schools Cup when they took part in a fight involving around 20 men.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard gardai were able to identify the youths by going through the Clongowes yearbook and finding their pictures.

Flood-Wiley, of Adelaide Street, Dun Laoghaire, and Lewis of Coppinger Close, Stillorgan but originally from Ennis in Clare, pleaded guilty to affray in relation to the punch-up on the Lower Rathmines Road on March 20, 2011.

Garda Mary Brophy told prosecuting counsel Roisin Lacy BL that a large number of current and former Clongowes students were in Tramco nightclub in Rathmines celebrating the school’s win on the night.

Another group of youths including Graham Bennett and Ryan Hatfield were also there celebrating a 21st birthday.

Mr Hatfield got in a verbal row with some Clongowes students in the smoking area before his group left the club and went to a chip shop. They again ran into the students, who shouted abuse at them. Mr Hatfield’s group walked on until he “felt a dig in his right ear”, then a fight broke out.

Mr Bennett fell in the struggle and was unable to stand up, hearing a popping sound when he tried. In hospital he was found to have a fractured leg.

Flood-Wiley and Lewis’s defence counsel said their clients had nothing to do with the injury, and this was accepted by the prosecution.

Flood-Wiley said he may have punched someone, but denied kicking or stamping. And Lewis claimed he had been hit.

Flood-Wiley has three previous convictions for theft, drug possession and a road traffic matter. Lewis has none.

Counsel for Flood-Wiley, Michael Bowman BL, said his client got involved “out of misplaced loyalty”. Breffni Gordon BL, for Lewis, said his client hoped to go into law, but that this conviction would trip him up at “every stage of his life”.

Judge Carmel Stewart said she wanted time to consider the matter and remanded both men on bail until next week.

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