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Daughter punched her dad's new love in the eye

A YOUNG woman depressed over the tragic death of her mother could not come to terms with her father's new girlfriend and punched when they met in a pub.

Mother-of-one Collette Phelan (26) attacked the woman, punching her and pulling her hair because she took "great exception" to the relationship.

Judge Murrough Connellan put her on a bond to keep the peace for a year and fined her €250 after hearing she had no criminal record and was now in counselling for depression.

Phelan, of Kilmacoo, Avoca, Co Wicklow, admitted assaulting the woman in an incident at Market Square, Rathdrum on June 7 last year -- eight months after her mother's death.

Wicklow District Court heard the accused and her brother were in the Railway Bar in Rathdrum when her father and his new partner arrived. There was "some unfriendliness" between the parties and the accused's father and his partner left.

Phelan followed them and in the confrontation that followed, she punched the woman in the eye and pulled her hair, a garda witness said.

The victim was left with a black eye and went to the doctor afterwards for treatment.

"She takes great exception to her father's new partner because her mother is deceased and died tragically," the garda told the court. "She hasn't come to terms with her father's new relationship. All the parties had drink taken on the night of the incident."

The court heard Phelan's mother passed away in October 2008.

"There was some animosity between my client and her father's new partner," her lawyer continued. "Since then she has taken steps to deal with the depression she has suffered since her mother's death and she is attending counselling."

The accused was a single mother with an eight-year-old child and had no previous convictions of any kind, he said.

Judge Connellan fined and convicted her, before binding her to keep the peace for a year in her own bond of €250. The accused did not address the court during the hearing.