Former garda loses claim for leg injury
A FORMER garda yesterday lost a High Court claim for damages over serious leg injuries he suffered when he was hit by a car while walking a road in a "severely intoxicated" state.
Enda Joseph Murphy (40), of Moneylagan, Newtownforbes, Longford, sued Michael Rogan (19), of Tooman, Dromad, Leitrim, arising out of the accident on a straight stretch of the main Sligo/Longford Road, near Longford town at around 4.45am on August 23, 2005.
He claimed he was walking on the hard shoulder at the time. But Mr Rogan, who was returning home from a night shift in a local factory, said Mr Murphy ran out in front of him, giving him no chance to avoid the collision.
The court heard Mr Murphy did not realise how badly injured he was and he denied saying to a garda at the scene "bollix, I'm just drunk".
A serum sample showed he had an equivalent blood/alcohol reading of more than twice the legal limit for driving.
Mr Rogan's van struck him on the leg causing severe injury which required 16 operations and will affect his ability to get employment in the future, the court also heard.
He had been discharged from the gardai in November 2004 following a disciplinary hearing and was working on the family farm at the time of the accident.
He went out that night to a local pub where, he claimed, he had four pints of Guinness and later had another can of beer. Rejecting his case yesterday, Mr Justice Paul Gilligan said there was nothing that could have been done by Mr Rogan to avoid the accident.
Mr Justice Gilligan said Mr Murphy only had to look both ways so as to satisfy himself it was safe for him to cross the road.