Friday 30 September 2016

Glamour model faces up to a year in prison for bite and scratch attack

Tom Tuite

Published 09/05/2016 | 15:42

Bridget Byrne aka Ava Van Rose, pictured leaving court after a previous hearing. Pic: Courts Collins
Bridget Byrne aka Ava Van Rose, pictured leaving court after a previous hearing. Pic: Courts Collins

A Dublin glamour model is to sentenced in June for assault after she admitted she jumped on a woman and then began to bite and scratch her.

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Bridget Byrne (26), who works under the name of Ava Van Rose, was ordered by Judge John Cheatle to appear again at Dublin District Court on June 13.

He was given a victim impact statement on Monday and adjourned the case to allow time for a pre-sentence probation report to be completed.

Byrne had pleaded guilty earlier to assault causing harm to Helen Guinan at a house at Wheatfield Avenue in Clondalkin, in Dublin, on October 20, 2013.

The model, who also starred in the short-lived reality show Infectious, had initially indicated she would contest the case on the grounds that she acted in self self-defence. However, in February, defence solicitor Brian Keenan told the court she was pleading guilty.

Garda Gerard Clifford of Ronanstown station has told Judge Cheatle that Ms Byrne has a daughter with Helen Guinan's partner. There had been a row over their arrangements for the child to be collected.

Gda Clifford said that mother-of-three Byrne, who has no prior criminal convictions, turned up at Ms Guinnan's home. Gda Clifford said that when the door was opened Byrne “jumped on Helen Guinan in the front hall and put her fingers in her eyes, she was biting her left hand and scratching her face”.

The woman suffered cuts to her face and the skin on her hand was broken. A medical report was handed in and Gda Clifford agreed with the defence solicitor that the injuries were superficial and that it was a minor assault.

Gardaí received a complaint two days later and they interviewed Ms Byrne, who now has an address at An Luasan, Ballybrit, Co. Galway but is from Clondalkin in west Dublin.

Gda Clifford also agreed that Byrne did not have any prior criminal convictions and has not come to garda attention since. The garda agreed that that the row was over family matters.

A district court conviction for the assault could result in a fine and a possible sentence of up to one year's imprisonment.

Mr Keenan said that his client has worked as a model and hopes to resume her education to study to become a personal trainer. He asked the court to take into account her guilty plea and the fact that she has no prior convictions.

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