A SUM of €10,000 in compensation was paid to the victim of a punch to the face for extensive dental damage and now, “with some reluctance”, the sentencing judge has imposed a two-year suspended term on the culprit.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said at the sentencing hearing for Nicholas O’Brien, aged 25, of Flat 2, Cork Foyer, Assumption Rd, Blackpool, Cork, that “this was a drunken assault by the accused on an innocent party on or near Washington St”.
He said: “It was one blow and significant damage was done to his mouth and teeth. He will require further dental work and, as we all know, that is extremely costly.
“€3,000 was paid initially and €7,000 brought in now can be paid to the victim.
“That is a significant factor in my disposing of the case.
“Without that compensation the victim would be at a loss.
“The guard tells me the defendant has not come to his attention since.
“With some reluctance but in view of his plea of guilty, the compensation, and staying out of trouble for the last two years I will impose a two-year sentence suspended on condition that he keeps the peace for two years,” said Judge Ó Donnabháin.
At Cork Circuit Criminal Court, Garda Paul Twiss outlined the background to the incident.
Garda Twiss said the injured party was out socialising on Washington St in Cork on November 3, 2017, when he was approached by O’Brien who punched him in the face causing two front teeth to fall out.
The defendant was arrested a short time later nearby at Castle St. He made full admissions when questioned.
Peter O’Flynn, defence barrister, said the accused had been working full time since November 2018 and had raised the compensation for the injured party.
Garda Twiss said the accused had 15 previous convictions including two for common assault and one for assault causing harm.
That more serious assault conviction dated back to December 2015 in Waterford and he was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment.
Mr O’Flynn said: “He has not consumed alcohol since this happened.
“He is working now. It is his first time ever in employment.
“He is proposing to raise the compensation.
“He was heavily intoxicated when this happened and he has expressed remorse.”