Commenting on one of the increasing number of assault cases before Carrick-on-Shannon District Court, Judge Kevin Kilrane said “this type of assault is most common and it must be stamped out.”
He noted a “single punch is sufficient to cause permanent injury or worse.”
Kenneth Farrell, Graiguemore, Bunclody, Wexford was charged with assault causing harm on Main Street, Carrick-on-Shannon on April 14, 2018.
Garda Burke told the court on the above night she was on patrol when she came across a male unconscious on Main Street surrounded by friends.
They reported he was assaulted and the perpetrator had left on foot towards the Bush Hotel.
An ambulance was called and the male, Kevin Kelly, was brought to Sligo University Hospital and released a number of hours later.
Both men were on different stag parties.
The incident had been caught on CCTV. The victim was hit with one punch to the right temple.
The court heard the following night both stag parties met by chance (without the victim) and had a drink together.
The defendant did not admit to the assault when arrested by Gardai and said a member of the other stag party “made a run at me.”
The victim Kevin Kelly said he had cuts to his temple and disfigured teeth and lips from the punch.
In a victim impact statement he said he was “down and depressed” after the incident and this upset his wife and daughter.
He also outlined the cost and loss of income due to this assault. He told Judge Kilrane he would accept compensation.
Solicitor Peter Collins said his 39-year-old client had no blemishes on his record since 2003.
He said this was a “one punch assault” and there were “no excuses.”
Mr Collins explained Mr Farrell had lost his brother a number of months before this and had “went off the rails drinking.” He is a father and “accepts he was totally wrong.”
Judge Kilrane said “it seems to be a feature of stag parties” that they drink too much. While he said everyone is welcome to Carrick-on-Shannon “this type of assault is most common and it must be stamped out.”
He noted this assault happened close to The Bush Hotel whose owner’s son was the victim of a single blow which caused his death.
He said “a message must be sent that this cannot continue.”
He also pointed out the defendant walked way from the unconscious victim and showed “little sign of remorse.”
He gave the defendant one month to have €5,000 compensation in court for the victim or face four months in prison.
He also ordered that the defendant’s partner be removed from the court as she was “trying to influence the court.”