Dad hit out 'like boxer', punching daughter (8) in the face
A father was like a boxer when he suddenly lashed out and punched his eight-year-old daughter in the face, a court has heard.
The man, who cannot be named to protect the identify of the girl, denied a charge of assault causing harm to her at their home in Dublin on a date in 2013. He was convicted after he went on trial before Judge Anthony Halpin at Dublin District Court. Sentencing was adjourned until a date in September.
The trial heard the girl and an older sibling moved in with their father and his partner a few years before the assault. However, the girl was closer to his partner, whom she began to look on as her mother, while she did not bond much with or talk to her father.
Giving evidence via videolink, the girl - now aged 12 - told the court that on the day of the attack her stepmother was upset with her for staying out so late. The child told the court she went out again but didn't ask for permission.
Her father was called and came home.
They were standing in a hallway and her stepmother was telling her how she was very disappointed in her. She said her father then punched her in the nose and she was bleeding a lot.
She remembered hitting her head against a door and her father stormed out.
She said after she was hit, her stepmother brought her upstairs and looked after her.
"I was crying a lot, I'd got a huge fright, banged my head on the door, I couldn't walk up the stairs properly," she said.
She did not need to go to the doctor because her nose was not broken.
The stepmother told the trial: "I was horrified, nothing was the same after."
In cross-examination she said her former partner did not say anything and that "it felt like it was in a boxing ring, he positioned himself and bang".
Judge Halpin adjourned sentencing until a date in September for a probation report to be furnished.