Sunday 15 September 2019

Man jailed for attacking former girlfriend after she was 'poked' on Facebook

The Facebook logo (Dominic Lipinski/PA)
The Facebook logo (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

Brion Hoban

A man who attacked his then girlfriend in their home over her being “poked” on Facebook by another man has been jailed for two years.

Joseph Dillon (32) of Shangan Court, Ballymun, Dublin pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assault causing harm at his home on February 9, 2018.

Judge Elma Sheahan sentenced Dillon to two and a half years imprisonment, but suspended the final six months of the sentence on strict conditions. She backdated the sentence to November 27, last, the date he first went into custody on this matter.

The court heard that the injured party was his girlfriend at the time of the offence and was living in his home. On the date in question she was “poked” on Facebook by a man she had never spoken to before.

Dillon told her to delete the man on Facebook and threatened her. He began to hit her, knocking her to the ground and kicking her in the face and ribs while she was on the floor

When she said she was leaving, he told her she was not going anywhere and continued to punch her in the face and body. At one point during the assault he spat at her and called her a tramp.

The court heard that Dillon had hit her once before which prompted her to leave him for a day. He apologised and she went back to him as she believed he would not do it again.

In a victim impact statement which she read out in court, the woman said she suffered fractured ribs, soft tissue damage to her right eye and bruises all over her body as a result of the assault.

She said the assault went on for hours and she had never been so afraid in her life. She said that she thought she was going to die during the assault.

Dillon has no previous convictions. The court heard he has sole custody of his son and that the child's mother died in 2009.

Rebecca Smith BL, defending, said the child currently resides with his aunt. She said her client admitted to being jealous and offered an apology to to the injured party in this case.

Judge Sheahan said the aggravating factors in the case were the seriousness of the offence and that it took place in the home where the injured party was residing. She said the mitigating factors were Dillon's guilty plea, his previous good character and his having sole custody of his son.

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