Assault accused brother Barry Lyttle weeps with relief over brother's remarkable recovery
AN Irishman charged with causing grievous bodily harm to his younger brother has spoken of his relief over his remarkable recovery.
Barry Lyttle (33) wept and held his head in his hands at a court hearing in Sydney yesterday when he was informed of ongoing medical problems confronting his brother Patrick.
Patrick is two years his junior, and Mr Lyttle, from Ballycastle, Co Antrim, is charged with recklessly causing him grievous bodily harm.
Patrick has regained consciousness after spending six days in a coma. He also spent some time on a life-support machine.
In early February he left hospital, accompanied by his girlfriend Maria McCaffrey, as well as his brother, his sister and their father Oliver (74). His head was shaved and bandaged, but both he and his brother were pictured together smiling. Patrick Lyttle is currently in a rehabilitation facility in a suburb of Sydney where his treatment is expected to last at least a month.
A hospital spokesperson said: "He is doing well. You don't just get better and go home. Especially with injuries to the brain there is a lot of rehabilitation involved."
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Following his court appearance, Barry Lyttle, referring to his brother's medical condition, said: "It's a huge relief, he's doing exceptionally well."
A medical report which could influence legal proceedings is expected in a matter of days.
In a court appearance last month, the conditions of the defendant's bail were changed to allow him move closer to his brother, rather than live with an aunt who is further away from the rehab centre.
His bail conditions have now been further altered so he only needs to report to police three times a week, rather than daily.
He has also handed over his passport and agreed to a surety of €1,371. He is legally restrained from approaching Patrick if he has consumed alcohol within the previous 12 hours.
Patrick Lyttle - who had been backpacking in Australia since June - met his brother and their father in Sydney three days before the alleged incident.
A resumed court hearing is scheduled for March 5.
In their home town of Ballycastle, local independent councillor Padraig McShane said there was a great sense of relief in the seaside resort. "It's terrific to see Patrick is well enough to be up and walking about with his brother.