A CLONASLEE man who punched his own sister and allegedly tried to choke her in the street was last week ordered to pay compensation and given a suspended sentence at the District Court in Portlaoise.
23-year-old Michael Madden, with an address listed at Cottage House, Castlecuff, Clonaslee, was charged with assault at The Square, Rathdowney, on September 4 last year.
Inspector Michael Walsh told the court that the defendant was “not getting along” with his own sister and at 1.40am on that date gardaí received a call of a woman having been assaulted. The gardaí discovered the injured party lying on the ground crying and she said she had been assaulted by Madden. The inspector said that Madden had punched her and attempted to choke before she was pushed to the ground.
The court heard that Madden has three previous convictions.
Defence, Mr Declan Breen said his client came from a family where there had been a lot of difficulties over the years.
“There’s a conflicted relationship between him and his sister,” Mr Breen admitted.
Mr Breen said that on the night, his client had tried to keep away from his sister but there was alcohol involved on both sides. The two parties happened to find each other in the pub and the sister approached Madden a number of times saying to wanted to talk to him. He didn’t want to talk to her, but at the end of the night she said something very cutting to him.
“That was the spark that lit his fuse,” said Mr Breen. “He lashed out and struck her.”
Mr Breen said that the medical report on the injured party did not indicate any choking by his client, although she did experience a slight fracture to her toe as she fell to the ground.
Mr Breen explained that his client had been in care from the age of 11 to 16 and at 16 he first came to the attention of the gardaí. Mr Breen handed in a probation report on Madden from July of last year and he told Judge William Early that Madden is now settled in Clonaslee and is on social welfare of €144 per week.
“He needs a lot of help and support,” Mr Breen said.
Judge Early ordered the payment of €700 compensation and put the matter back to December 6. If the money is paid and Madden comes to no adverse garda attention before then, the judge said he would impose a four-month sentence, suspended for 12 months on condition Madden keeps the peace.