Tuesday 27 September 2016

I did not take my neighbour's eye out with steel bar, man tells court

Elaine Keogh

Published 07/05/2015 | 07:17

Cathal Murphy
Cathal Murphy

A man has denied assaulting his neighbour with a steel bar resulting in him losing his right eye.

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The defence is claiming that the injured man caused the injury to himself by swinging a chain in an uncontrolled way.

Cathal Murphy
Cathal Murphy

Cathal Murphy (53) has denied causing the injury to Patrick 'Patsy' Connolly (59) on July 15, 2011.

Murphy has pleaded not guilty to assault causing harm and assault causing serious harm to Connolly.

Dundalk circuit criminal court heard that both offences are alleged to have taken place outside Mr Connolly's home at Cavan Road, Knockbridge, Co Louth.

Mr Connolly told the jury that he was directing his son Barry as he reversed in a low-loader to the side of their house.

Patrick (Patsy) Connolly
Patrick (Patsy) Connolly

He said he saw Cathal Murphy drive up the road and stop outside his house.

He alleged the defendant, "jumped out of his jeep", and was shouting. The defendant wanted the van moved saying it was blocking the entrance to his field, the court heard.

"I told him to get off my property," and the incident, "became a scuffle between me and Cathal Murphy", Mr Connolly said.

He said his son Barry "got between us" and Murphy returned to his jeep. Barry went to move the transit van.

Connolly said that Murphy then came with "a bar about four-feet long, and he [Patsy Connolly] leaned back out of the way and he got me full force on the eyebrow and split me".

Cross-examined by Mr Roddy O'Hanlon, defending, Mr Connolly denied that the scuffle was started by him "launching himself at Cathal Murphy".

Mr O'Hanlon put it to the witness that he had taken a chain off a low-loader and was swinging it and "it was the chain which hit your face and you yourself were responsible for your injury".

Mr Connolly replied, "that is incorrect ... I had no chain".

The court heard that, as a result of the injury, Mr Connolly lost his right eye.

His daughter Aine said that blood was "gushing" from her father's eye.

The court heard that, after the alleged assault, Paul and Barry Connolly had driven off after Cathal Murphy to confront him.

It was claimed the accused had swung a steel bar and struck Paul with it. Both denied assaulting Murphy.

The trial continues before Judge Michael O'Shea this morning.

Herald

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