A man attacked and bit a garda who had found him lying in his own vomit on the side of the road and driven him back to his house, a court has heard.
Shane Halpin (25) of Fouillard Lane, Lusk, Co Dublin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assaulting Garda Derek Dalton causing him harm at his address on September 2, 2018. He has no previous convictions.
Sergeant John Cannon told John Berry BL, prosecuting, that in the early hours of the morning on the date in question, gardaí received a call about a person lying unconscious on the side of the road at Blakes Cross, Lusk.
Sgt Cannon said that Halpin was intoxicated and appeared to have vomited on himself. Gda Dalton decided to bring him home and called for a garda van.
Gda Dalton was concerned that Haplin might not have given the correct address, so he knocked on the door and asked the accused's mother if Halpin was welcome there. After she said that he was, Halpin emerged from the garda van and was “quite aggressive”.
Halpin started grappling with Gda Dalton and ripped his radio and torch from his person. Gda Dalton raised his arm to shield himself and was bitten by the accused on the hand.
The two men ended up on the ground and Halpin was initially subdued. Halpin, however, managed to free himself and bit Gda Dalton on the knee.
Gda Dalton suffered a fracture to a bone in his hand along with the two bites and an injury to his groin. The court heard he could not return to duty for six months as a result.
Sgt Cannon told the court that Halpin had returned from a six month internship in the US that evening and had met with friends over drinks. He said Halpin had little recollection of the incident and was horrified by his behaviour as recounted by his mother the following morning.
Judge Melanie Greally said this was a very serious incident of assault that left injuries to the unfortunate garda “who was carrying out an act of considerable kindness”.
Judge Greally said it appeared to have been a “hugely aberrational” event committed by a young man who she described as being “very unlikely to cross the threshold of a courtroom again”.
She imposed an indicative sentence of two years imprisonment and deferred the sentence until April 1, next. She said that if Halpin was compliant with a bond to keep the peace and be of good behaviour to that date then she would make an order discharging him from the indictment.
Judge Greally also directed he hand over the sum of €3,000, which he had with him in court, to Little Blue Heroes, a charity that had been nominated by Gda Dalton.