A 25-year-old trainee barista who subjected a woman to what Judge McKiernan described as an ‘horrendous attack’ has been jailed for four months.
Ryan McEneaney, Woodview Park, Castletown Road, Dundalk, pleaded guilty to summonses for assault causing harm, production of a knife and criminal damage arising out of the incident.
Evidence was heard that on October 18, 2020, he shouted for people to come out of a house in Woodview Park while holding the knife.
It was submitted on the defendant’s behalf that he was eager to pay for the damage caused to a car and that he did not want to miss the birth of his first child.
Sgt Jimmy McGovern said that it was reported to gardaí that a man was causing damage to a vehicle in the estate.
On arrival officers saw that it was extensively damaged. Mr McEneaney was pointed out to them. He could be seen at the window of a house. He was arrested.
It transpired that he went to the house. He had a knife and shouted at people there to come out.
The defendant lunged at a male and when the woman tried to stop him he struck her on the eye. Another man then intervened.
The damage amounted to €1,300 and had not been paid.
There were nine previous convictions.
The victim testified that she was seen by ambulance personnel that night. She had bruising and suffered headaches for a week. She had been advised to attend hospital but didn’t go.
Solicitor Paula Tiernan handed into court two letters on behalf of her client, a trainee barista.
He had addressed a drug addiction and was trying to turn his life around.
Mr McEneaney was in a relationship and expecting his first child which has had a sobering effect on him.
He was eager to pay compensation and sought time to do that.
Judge McKiernan said this was a very serious matter.
‘Over two years later innocent people are still out of pocket. It’s absolutely scandalous. She (the victim) suffered an horrendous attack.’
Ms Tiernan said her client was willing to pay over and above the amount of damage he caused. He wanted to be around for the birth of his child.
However, the judge said the court didn’t believe that anything was appropriate other than a custodial sentence.
‘These people were in their home.’
A four-month sentence was imposed for the assault with the other summonses taken into consideration, including one for possession of €10-worth of cannabis at Castleross, on January 21. 2022.
Judge McKiernan said she appreciated Mr McEneaney’s circumstances but did not accept the evidence that he had made it through addiction.
Legal aid was granted.
Bail in the event of an appeal was set at a personal bond of €300 with an independent surety of €1,000 cash to be lodged.