Jury clears Army captain of assaulting British commando
A CAPTAIN in the Irish Defence Forces has been acquitted by a jury of assaulting a British Army commando at his home following a night out.
Captain Kenneth Cooney (37) had denied assaulting Colm Croghan (38) at his home in Sarsfield Street in Dublin 7 on October 17, 2009.
The jury of seven men and five women at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court returned their verdict following two hours of deliberation on day five of the trial.
They are still considering their verdict in relation to former garda Dara Mac Giolla Ri (37), who also denied the same offence.
Mr Croghan had earlier told the jury that Capt Cooney held him down on a couch, while Mr Mac Giolla Ri hit him on the back of a head with a metal object opening his skull.
He told the jury that Mr Mac Giolla Ri had struck him a further two or three times and Capt Cooney had earlier punched him a number of times in the head while swinging an iron bar at him.
The court heard that the first garda on the scene, Garda Neil Cepeda, had been trained by Capt Cooney 14 years previously.
The court also heard that a second iron bar, which Mr Croghan claimed Capt Cooney had struck him with, has since gone missing.
Notes of the men's interviews with gardai and the videos of those interviews have also gone missing and were not available as exhibits in the trial.