Carpenter fined more than €1,000 for assault at party

A carpenter was fined more than €1,000 after assaulting another man at a house party.

Forty-year-old Sam Holmes, with an address at 21 Ashbrook, Oranmore, appeared at Galway District Court last Monday and pleaded guilty to failure to appear for a court date on July 30, 2007, and to assaulting a man on July 17, 2007, at Dun Na Carraige, Blackrock, Salthill. A charge of possessing a knife at Mincloon, Rahoon, on September 19, 2008, was withdrawn.

The court heard that the defendant had been in a private apartment when he struck another person. Holmes hit the man “a number of times in the face”. When he was arrested Holmes told gardai that he had only struck once, that he didn’t know why he had done it, but that he thought the man was giving out about his girlfriend.

Defence solicitor Olivia Traynor said that the injured party’s girlfriend had invited her client back to a party along with friends and that they had all been drinking. She said Holmes, who is single and employed as a carpenter, had broken up with his partner and had been drinking heavily at the time. She added that he still has access to his child.

Inspector Sean Glynn said that the defendant’s last previous conviction was in 1999 when he received a three-month suspended sentence for public order offences.

Ms Traynor said that Holmes had been in custody for a week and it was his first time in prison.

Judge Mary Fahy said he had been “reacting to something he shouldn’t have”. She then convicted and fined Holmes €750 for the assault and €300 for failing to appear. He was given four months to pay the fines.

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