Sunday 17 December 2017

Man who hit garda did voluntary work

Balbriggan Court
Balbriggan Court

Nicola Donnelly

An apprentice electrician who told a garda to 'Go f**k yourself, w**ker' before punching another garda several times on the side of his head had his case struck out after he completed voluntary work and made a donation to the Garda Benevolent Fund.

Conn Savage (21) claimed he 'over reacted' protecting his girlfriend, who was also involved in an altercation with gardai on the night.

The defendant and his girlfriend were involved in an argument in her front garden the early hours of the morning of St Patrick's Day last year. A number of people had gathered in the garden and the defendant's girlfriend's mother phoned the gardai. When gardai arrived the defendant refused to leave the area.

Detective Sergeant Padraig Lynch said the defendant started to shout at people who had gathered at the scene.

'He turned around and shouted at Garda Aidan O'Halloran 'Go f**k yourself, w**ker,' said Det Lynch.

The defendant then resisted arrest and started to swing his arms around. A tussle ensued between the defendant and Garda Kevin Fitzpatrick and both men loss their balance and fell to the ground.

The defendant then punched Gda Fitzpatrick on the left temple of his head several times with a closed fist, while the garda was still lying on the ground. The garda had slight inflammation to his temple and ear as a result of the punches, the court heard.

'The defendant's girlfriend then became involved in a tussle until her family pulled her away,' said Det Lynch.

The defendant, who has no previous convictions, was arrested but continued to be aggressive until he got to the garda station - where he expressed remorse for his actions.

Savage, of St Catherine's Avenue in Rush pleaded guilty to assaulting Gda Fitzpatrick on March 17, 2016 at St Patrick's Close in Skerries.

He further pleaded guilty to using threatening and abusive behaviour on the same date.

Defence barrister Patrick Jackson previously told the court the defendant hadn't been drinking or using intoxicants on the night.

'He over-reacted as he felt his girlfriend may have been in trouble with the gardai. It was an over-reaction in protecting her,' explained Mr Jackson.

'An argument between him and his girlfriend got out of hand and he had intended on leaving the area.

'His actions are something he is not proud of,' said Mr Jackson, adding a conviction would have 'serious implications' for his career as an electrician as he may want to travel overseas.

Judge Dermot Dempsey said he would strike the case out if the defendant paid €1,000 to the Garda Benevolent Fund, and complete 50 hours voluntary work, which the defendant complied with.

Fingal Independent

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