GAA player who broke rival's eye socket avoids prison term
A GAA footballer who left another player with a fractured eye socket after punching him during a club game has been spared a prison term.
Unemployed plasterer Keith Naylor (39) had just been substituted for St Finbarr's when he went up to Padraic O Choncuir of Ballinteer St Johns and punched him in the side of the face.
Judge Martin Nolan sentenced Naylor to three years' imprisonment, but suspended the sentence on condition that he keep the peace for three years and pay his victim €5,000 within 12 months.
Judge Nolan told Naylor that his good record had saved him from prison.
The judge said the rule of law extends to football matches and that some players didn't seem to realise this.
Naylor, of Dunmanus Road, Cabra, Dublin, admitted at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the assault causing harm of Mr O Choncuir at Marlay Park, Grange Road, Rathfarnham, on August 17, 2011.
The court heard that Naylor punched the victim just after Mr O Choncuir had taken a free kick.
Mr O Choncuir later had to have a titanium plate permanently inserted into his face and his nose had to be rebroken in two places.
The chairman of St Finbarr's GAA, Noel Paget, said that the assault was out of character.