Ex-garda gets €27k after headbutt
AN ex-garda, whose nose was broken in a head-butting incident by a youth he had taken into custody, has been awarded €27,400 in the High Court.
Julian Shanagher (32) told a Garda Compensation hearing that in May 2009 he had been patrolling with a colleague in Tower Hill, Portlaoise, Co Laois, when they came across a public order incident involving youths.
Mr Shanagher, of Kingston Lawn, Ballinteer, Dublin, told his barrister, Barry Finlay, that as the youths were asked to behave, one of them, who was "extremely drunk", shouted obscenities and told them to "f*** off".
The court heard that the youth was arrested and handcuffed and taken to Portlaoise garda station.
As Mr Shanagher tried to calm the arrested youth, he suddenly head-butted him in the face.
Mr Shanagher had been taken to the A&E department of Portlaoise Hospital, where X-rays revealed a nasal fracture.
Mr Finlay said Mr Shanagher, who had been doing in-garda training to start a career in the Fire Brigade at the time, had been off work for a month due to his injury. He had joined Dublin Fire Brigade in 2009 and had undergone rhinoplastic surgery in 2010 to re-set his nose.
Judge Mary Irvine awarded him €27,400 compensation against the Minister for Finance.