Man assaults security man in smoke queue, court hears

A Spiddal man who assaulted a security man because he thought he was another customer skipping the queue for the smoking section may have received the benefit of the Probation Act but he will no longer be welcome back to the city centre pub, the Galway District Court heard this week.

The injured party, a security man at The Front Door in Cross Street, told Judge Mary Fahy that although he accepted the defendant’s apology he would not welcome him back to the pub.

Donal De Barra (28 ) with an address at Baile An Domhnallian, Spiddal, pleaded guilty last Monday to asaulting Declan McGrath on March 16, 2009.

Inspector Pat McHugh told the court that gardai met with a security man who said that a intoxicated man had been asked to leave the premises. The gardai were further informed that a security man had approached De Barra to ask “what was happening” when De Barra suddenly struck out at him. Inspector McHugh added that De Barra has no previous convictions.

Defence solicitor Adrian MacLynn said that at the time his client had been under severe stress because his sister had been undergoing a very serious brain operation. He said that De Barra had been queuing up to go for a smoke when a member of staff brushed passed him. De Barra did not realise this person was staff and thought it was another customer “jumping the queue”. Mr MacLynn said that his client, who recently got married and is on study leave from work, apologises for his behaviour on the night.

The injured party, Mr McGrath, then told Judge Fahy that he had been hit in the jaw with a fist. He said that he would accept De Barra’s apology adding that “the fact he is in court, it’s enough”.

“He hit out for no reason, I worry about his control of his temper,” said Judge Fahy who ordered that the €500 brought into court be handed to the injured party.

Mr MacLynn then asked Judge Fahy to consider giving his client the benefit of the Probation Act.

“Is he welcome at The Front Door anymore?” Judge Fahy asked Mr McGrath to which he replied: “No, not by me”.

“In future when you are out socialising you need to be in control of your temper,” warned Judge Fahy who said that she would take into account the defendant’s concern for his sister. She then applied the Probation Act Section 1(1 ).

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