The father of a seven-year-old child has been convicted at Cork District Court for assaulting his son who was having a tantrum in the back of his car.
The man who is aged around 40 pleaded guilty to a charge of assaulting his son on May 19, 2018, at a location in Cork.
Under the Children’s Act the identity of the child cannot be disclosed in reporting of the case.
Inspector James Hallahan said the accused man stopped the car, grabbed a plastic toy from the child – and in so doing grabbed the child. The father smashed the toy and threw it into a ditch at the side of the road.
Judge Con O’Leary said the defendant seemed to lack insight into what happened on the day 14 months ago.
Abigail Creed defence barrister said: “He admitted he grabbed the toy from the child, smashed it and threw it in the ditch.”
The parents had separated in 2015 and the child told his mother what his father did in the car on May 19 2018. As a result of this, a complaint was made to gardaí and the man was prosecuted for assault.
Judge O’Leary said his understanding of the background was that there was an issue with the child having tantrums, the father’s patience was tried and he over-reacted.
The boy’s mother told gardaí her husband said: “I am fed up with (child’s name) tantrums.”
Ms Creed BL said he was about to do a parenting course. Judge O’Leary asked why it had taken 14 months for him to do a parenting course.
The defendant said he did not have an excuse for why he had not taken on the parenting course. He said he had not had access to his children for the past 12 months.
Judge O’Leary said: “Given that he is lacking insight I order he enters a probation bond for 12 months with a review on Dec 10. I am not making any order about a parenting course. I hope he will do that of his own volition. The impression I am getting is that he is not getting the picture.”
Ms Creed BL said: “He does admit that he lost his temper.