More comp needed if man is to avoid jail

A Stradbally man who headbutted another man in an unprovoked attack was last week ordered to pay extra compensation to avoid going to jail.

Before last week’s sitting of Portlaoise District Court was William Fitzpatrick, Hillcrest, Killone, Stradbally, charged with assault at Main Street, Portlaoise, on December 27, 2012.

Inspector Aidan Farrelly gave evidence that the assault took place at 3.20am, and was witnessed by Garda Sgt Reilly. The inspector said that “for no reason” Fitzpatrick headbutted the injured party outside Lockey’s bar, causing him to fall to the ground.

While on the ground, the injured party sustained further injuries not caused by Fitzpatrick. The injured party required stitches to his mouth, suffered a concussion, and received medical treatment in hospital on two occasions.

Defence, Ms Josephine Fitzpatrick said that her client had written a letter of apology and had €250 compensation in court.

Defence said that Fitzpatrick had had an over-reliance on unprescribed antidepressants and had very little recollection of the incident.

“He thought the injured party had become involved with a friend of his,” said Ms Fitzpatrick.

Ms Fitzpatrick handed in the letter of apology, and said that her client had “matured considerably” since the incident.

Judge Staines requested a full victim impact report on the injured party and put the matter back to March 6.

“If I am to deal with this in a non-custodial way, he’d want to have more compensation than €250,” said the judge.

The €250 that Fitzpatrick had brought to court was given to Insp Farrelly to keep, with the judge ruling that the full amount be given to the injured party when the case returns.

A co-accused in the matter, Shane Carroll, of 127 The Hermitage, Portlaoise, pleaded not guilty to assault. His case has gone back to March 6. Defence is Mr Declan Breen.


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