Sunday 15 December 2019

Man and woman charged over biting and bottle attack on taxi driver

Taxi man, Jiyue Song
Taxi man, Jiyue Song
Andrew Phelan

Andrew Phelan

A MAN and woman have been charged in connection with a “vicious” assault on a taxi driver who suffered multiple injuries when he was allegedly bitten, kicked and struck on the head with a bottle.

Gary Crowley (27) and Sarah Fitzgerald (22) both appeared in court following the alleged attack which left the cabbie suffering several lacerations.

Dublin District Court heard Mr Crowley was allegedly “covered in blood” when he was arrested.

Judge Michael Walsh refused to grant bail to Mr Crowley following objections by gardai and remanded him in custody until Wednesday.

Ms Fitzgerald was granted bail with no garda objections and her case was adjourned to a date in September, for the directions of the DPP to be made available.

Mr Crowley, who is unemployed and with an address at Oakley Road, Ranelagh and Ms Fitzgerald, a hotel waitress from Sycamore Lawn, Castleknock are both charged with assault causing harm to father-of-two Jiyue Song (32).

The offence is alleged to have happened at Charleston Road, Ranelagh on July 5 last.

Garda James O’Donnell said Mr Crowley made no reply when the charge was put to him, while Ms Fitzgerald replied: “I’m sorry for what happened to the taxi man.”

He objected to bail in Mr Crowley’s case, citing the nature and seriousness of the charge.

Garda O’Donnell said it would be alleged that Mr Crowley and a female companion - Ms Fitzgerald - got a taxi at 5.20am and refused to pay the fare on arrival at their destination.

On the footpath, Mr Song was allegedly struck on the back of the head with a glass bottle.

Garda O’Donnell alleged that Mr Crowley “viciously” assaulted Mr Song, kicking, punching and biting him numerous times.

He was treated for numerous lacerations and received stitches. It was alleged that bloodstained clothing was seized from him when he was arrested minutes after the incident, a short distance away. He was “covered in blood”, the garda said.

Mr Crowley was living in temporary hostel accommodation. Applying for bail on his behalf, defence solicitor Michael Kelleher said Mr Crowley could continue to live at that address. He was prepared to abide by conditions including a curfew.

Garda O’Donnell said further charges “may be contemplated” in the case.

Judge Walsh said Mr Crowley came before the court an innocent man until the case is disposed of.

Ms Fitzgerald was granted bail on condition that she remains alcohol and drug free and is of good behaviour. She must also stay out of the Dublin 6 area and sign on three times per week at Blanchardstown Garda Station.

The judge granted legal aid to both accused after hearing Mr Crowley was unemployed while Ms Fitzgerald worked part time in a hotel.

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