Courts

Friday 25 July 2014

Concert-goer knifed two after downing bottle of rum before Phoenix Park event

Declan Brennan

Published 25/02/2014|02:30

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FILE IMAGE TAKEN DURING DISTRICT COURT APPEARANCE 
Raymond Donnan, with an address at Greenfort Crescent, Clondalkin, Dublin - who was jailed for four (4) years following his guilty plea at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to violent disorder and assault causing harm to Andrew England at the Phoenix Park on July 7, 2012. .Pic: Paddy Cummins/PCPhoto.ie
Raymond Donnan

A YOUNG man who stabbed two innocent bystanders during the infamous Swedish House Mafia concert had downed a bottle of rum outside the venue.

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Raymond Donnan (24) has been jailed for four years after being part of a group of eight males and four females that took part in separate attacks on other concert-goers.

A court heard that he had consumed a bottle of rum after security staff had stopped him from bringing the alcohol into the Phoenix Park for the gig.

His counsel, Michael Bowman, said his client was told he could drink it immediately before getting in. He said the organisers of the concert were "reprimanded severely" after the dance music event.

Donnan, of Greenfort Crescent, Clondalkin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to violent disorder and assault causing harm to Andrew England at the Phoenix Park on July 7, 20112. Judge Martin Nolan imposed a four-year jail term and said Mr England was lucky not to have suffered worse injuries. The other victim was never identified.

Garda Sergeant Shane McCartan told prosecuting counsel Shane Costelloe that an off-duty garda at the concert witnessed Donnan and about eight young men and four young women attack another man for no apparent reason.

TORSO

He said Donnan stabbed this first victim three times in the torso while the off-duty garda went off to find other gardai and security staff.

He returned with these to find the gang attacking Mr England. One man struck him over the head with a bottle and then used the broken bottle to stab him in the arm.

When Mr England tried to get away, Donnan stabbed him multiple times in the back. Sgt McCartan testified that the blade of the knife was four to five inches long. Sgt McCartan said that at this point gardai were preparing to safely remove Donnan from the crowd and arrest him – but he and three other men immediately attacked a third victim, punching and kicking him.

Gardai then moved in, surrounded Donnan and arrested him. The court heard Donnan's previous convictions included sale or supply of heroin, and possession of a Stanley knife blade in Dublin city centre.

Mr Bowman said there was little he could say to defend what was an "unprovoked gratuitous act of violence".

He said that as a result of how the concert was managed and "poorly marshalled", event organisers met afterwards with the garda commissioner and protocols were put into place for any future events in the park.

Counsel said that concert-goers who showed up with alcohol were allowed to stand to one side and consume it there, rather than having it confiscated. He said this resulted in a number of arrests for violence, public order and drunkenness.

He said Donnan, in "an act of gross stupidity", drank an entire bottle of rum and was "ferociously intoxicated".

Irish Independent

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