A college student who spent the past fortnight in jail pending sentence for a single knock-out blow to another student outside a Cork city night spot was released and given a suspended jail term.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said he had remanded the young man – who was never in trouble before or since this incident – in custody “to open his eyes to the reality of what was facing him if he continued with this type of behaviour.”
Defence barrister Brian Leahy said it had been a very sobering experience for Ciaran Allen to spend two weeks in custody.
Mr Leahy said that unusually, the defendant began to save money to compensate the victim immediately after it happened and had gathered €5,000 out of his part-time work.
Judge Ó Donnabháin acknowledged the unlikelihood of the defendant getting into trouble again as he imposed a three-year suspended sentence.
21-year-old Ciaran Allen of Innishannon Road, Fair Hill, Cork, punched Dylan O’Shaughnessy outside Deep South on Grand Parade, Cork, on September 13 2019.
Garda Patricia O’Riordan testified at Cork Circuit Criminal Court that the injured party went over to talk to a girl in his class in college, when the defendant and another young man arrived and pushed him away.
Afterwards there was a brief, verbal encounter outside the premises and then Ciaran Allen punched Mr O’Shaughnessy in the face as the injured party was walking away from him. He landed on his head, bled from his left ear and was unconscious for a period.
The victim said, “From having no problems to having to deal with my mental health and physical health because of this is very saddening and frustrating for me. Ciaran Allen’s actions have caused me irreversible damage and I deal with the effects of the incident daily. I hope I can one day overcome this trauma but I fear I’ll be feeling these effects for the rest of my life.”