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No conviction for man who bit shop worker

AN insurance salesman who bit into a shop assistant's cheek after he was confronted for grabbing chocolate bars has been left without an assault conviction.

Kevin Ward (22), had been at a work party before he started taking sweets from the shop shelves.

Dublin District Court heard he bit the worker, lacerating his cheek and injuring his eye in a struggle after he was told to stop.

Ward, of Killery House, Upper Dargle Road, Bray, Co Wicklow, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to Wasif Hussain at Coleman's shop, Westmoreland Street on December 7, 2012.

Judge Michael Walsh dismissed the charge under the Probation Act after he paid €2,500 compensation.

Previously, the court heard the defendant went into the store at 3.15am and selected several bars of chocolate, which he placed into the pockets of a man who was in the queue.

Ward was "a bit drunk" at the time, after a work party. Mr Hussain came from behind the counter and asked Ward to return the chocolates but the defendant placed them behind his back.

The victim tried to retrieve them and a struggle ensued in which he bit Mr Hussain on the cheek, piercing the skin.

The victim said the scar on his cheek had since healed but he still suffered from black spots in his eye.

Ward "apologised unreservedly" for the incident which was "completely out of character", his barrister said.