Daylight attack in Ennis Town Centre

This article is from page 18 of the 2011-05-31 edition of The Clare People. OCR mistakes are to be expected so download the original SWF or the rendered page 18 JPG

A PRISON sentence has been handed down to a man for his role in a “frenzied’ and “out of control attack” that took place in Ennis town centre last year.

Patrick McDonagh (32) with an address at O’Brien Street, Tullamore, Offaly had previously pleaded guilty to a charge of assault causing serious harm to Bernard McDonagh at Marketplace, Ennis on May 18, 2010.

At Ennis Circuit Court yesterday, Sgt Michael Moloney described details of an assault that led to Bernard McDonagh losing half of his right ring finger. He said that, on the day in question, Bernard McDonagh had driven to Ennis National School at 3pm to collect his children.

He said that the accused had been one of three men traveling in a black Toyota Avensis who had followed Bernard McDonagh to the school. He said the accused and another man launched an assault on the injured party while the car was stopped outside the school.

The court heard how Bernard McDonagh drove “furiously” away from the front of the school and ended up driving the wrong way into the market area of the town, coming to halt in heavy traffic and “very narrowly avoiding a collision”.

Mr McDonagh’s 14-year-old son, five-year-old daughter and baby granddaughter were in the car throughout the course of the incident.

Sgt Moloney said the incident was captured on CCTV. He said that the accused had got out of the Avensis, wielding an iron bar along with another man who was holding a machete. The court heard that a third man was also involved in the assault. Sgt Moloney said the men engaged in “frenzied” assault that lasted “26-27 seconds”, damaging the car and causing serious injuries to Bernard McDonagh.

The court was told that the injured man’s 14-year-old son then drove his father to Ennis General Hospital.

Bernard McDonagh suffered multiple injuries including the loss of half of his right ring finger.

Sgt Moloney said the accused was arrested a week after the incident occurred. He said the assault had arisen as a result of a feud between two Traveller families who were closely related. He said the feud was no longer an issue in Ennis as the accused man’s family had since moved to Tullamore.

Counsel for Patrick McDonagh, David Sutton said the accused was a father of three, who had worked parttime in a local garage. He said Patrick McDonagh had made himself available for arrest shortly after the incident, the only one of the three men to do so.

Mr Sutton said the man had since moved to Tullamore and had not been involved in any trouble since then. He said Patrick McDonagh had been “dragged into a family feud”.

Judge Carroll Moran said the accused man’s plea of guilty entitled him to a considerable discount on his sentence.

He added that the accused had not been the “prime mover” in the assault and had been the only one to come forward to “face the music”.

He described the assault as a “fairly savage, frenzied and out of control attack”. He said the presence of three children in the car had not acted as “restraining factor” on the accused and the other two men.

He imposed a five-year sentence with the last two years suspended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *