A 52-year-old man walking his husky dog who assaulted another man walking his two Bernese Mountain dogs will have the case against him struck out if he does three hours of voluntary work a week for 20 weeks.
That was the decision of Judge Marian O’Leary in the case against Martin O’Leary of 125 Commons Road, Cork, at Cork District Court.
As well as doing the voluntary work the judge required him to make a €750 contribution to the court poor box.
“If that is done I will strike it out,” Judge O’Leary said.
If he fails to do the voluntary work or make the charitable contribution the judge said the alternative will be a conviction and €1,000 fine.
At a contested case earlier this year Martin O’Leary denied the charge of assault causing harm to Stephen Casey who is in his 40s.
Martin O’Leary was walking his husky dog while Mr Casey was walking his two Bernese Mountain dogs when the incident occurred on June 22 2021.
Mr Casey testified that Martin O’Leary struck him across the back with a stick and also hit him in the head.
Defence solicitor, Michael Quinlan, asked the accused man to account in court for what happened at Dublin Hill industrial estate. He said, “I didn’t take notice of anyone until Mr Casey came towards me. I clenched the dog (on the lead) close to me… His two dogs – two Rottweilers – just charged in on top of my dogs. My dog is not a fighting dog. The two of them attacked him. I defended him with my stick. He had no control over the two of them. My dog was being attacked from both sides.
“I defended my dog as much as I could. I thought my dog was dead on the ground. I am not the type of person who would want to be hitting someone. I had to defend my dog.”
Judge Marian O’Leary was told that the injured party’s dogs were Bernese mountain dogs and not Rottweilers.
Judge Marian O’Leary concluded, “I find the state has reached the threshold to prove Section 3 assault.”
This section of the Non-fatal Offences Against the Person Act relates to a charge of assault causing harm.
Inspector Pat Murphy said Mr Casey wanted to prepare a victim impact statement. The judge adjourned the imposition of penalty until now when she indicated that the case could be struck out on the terms which she set.