Dart guard punched for taking drunk's wine

Andrew Phelan

A DRUNK punched an Iarnrod Eireann security man in the face when he took him off a Dart for drinking a bottle of wine in the carriage.

Father-of-one Alan Downes (26) hit the security guard as he was being removed from the train following complaints from other passengers.

Judge Catherine Staines adjourned the case against him for a community service suitability report. Downes, of Drinaghmore Avenue, Dublin 18, admitted charges of assaulting the man and public intoxication.

Dublin District Court heard gardai were called to Howth Junction Dart Station at 8.45pm on July 12 last. The accused was in a drunken state at the scene and two members of rail security were present.

One of the men explained that they had received a complaint that there was a drunk man on the train and when they went down the carriages they found Downes drinking a bottle of wine. He punched one of the guards when taken down onto the platform. The court heard he had six previous convictions for offences including public order breaches and drunk driving.


Downes was an out-of-work plasterer who had had two people working for him before his business faltered due to the recession, his solicitor said.

"He accepts he was quite inebriated, she said. "He has very little memory of the actual assault itself."

The court heard Downes was apologetic for what happened and accepted that he had a "difficulty in relation to alcohol".

Judge Staines remanded the accused on continuing bail to a date in January for a community service report.

She recommended 100 hours instead of three months if Downes was found suitable.

She also ordered him to pay €400 compensation to the security guard.