Monday 19 March 2018

Ran at garda during street incident

A 24-year-old man who charged at a Garda during a street incident in Dundalk has been given a chance to avoid a conviction for assault after Judge John Coughlan said he wanted a sizeable donation made to the Garda Benevolent Fund.

Gary Rice, (24), Loughorne Road, Newry, admitted assaulting the Garda during the course of his duty, being intoxicated and engaging in threatening or abusive behaviour during an incident at Park Street on June 6 last year.

Dundalk District Court heard there had been 'a number of incidents' in town that night and there were a number of officers on beat duty on the streets. One Garda was speaking to people on Park Street when Rice, who was not involved in this particular incident, 'came running at a person the Garda was speaking to'.

The court was told the Garda was 'trying to protect the person he was dealing with and moved in front of him', but Rice 'charged at speed' at the man and 'had no regard that the Garda was there'.

Judge Coughlan said he believed that a sizeable donation of €2,000 should be made to the Garda Benevolent Trust Fund, which provides, among other things, assistance to officers experiencing financial difficulties or who have lost a child or a spouse. Rice's solicitor said his client is a young man of limited means but had €1,000 in court.

The judge said he didn't think that was enough, but he would give Rice time to come up with the rest of the donation. Judge Coughlan said that it wasn't normal practice for individual Gardai to be given compensation. He adjourned the matter to October 25 for the defendant to come up with the rest of the cash.

The Argus