A Carrick-on-Suir man received a three years prison sentence with the last year suspended at Clonmel Circuit Court's latest session for assaulting the proprietor of a fastfood restaurant in his hometown.
Judge Tom Teehan imposed this penalty on Patrick Power of 51 Mountain View, Carrick-on-Suir for assaulting and harming Franco Bove at the Central Grill, Main St., Carrick-on-Suir on May 20, 2015.
The court heard that Mr Bove was unable to work for a week after the assault and suffered an injury that required him to undergo costly dental repairs.
Judge Teehan handed down the prison term to Power because he failed to comply with all the measures he directed the defendant should carry out during the nine months the case was adjourned after he pleaded guilty to the assault last March. Alongside this, Power committed a public order offence last August.
Sgt. Kieran O'Regan told the court Mr Bove declined to give a Victim Impact Statement to the court. He said Power had written a letter of apology, which was forwarded to Mr Bove.
Power's barrister Dan Walsh BL said his client partially complied with the court's directions. He presented to the court a letter from a GP in relation to Power's participation in a methadone programme and a letter from Carrick-on-Suir River Rescue in relation to voluntary work he carried out with the group. He also did some voluntary work with a local GAA club.
The barrister pointed out that his client wasn't in a position to hand over urine analysis results (showing he was free of alcohol and drugs) and hadn't done the anger management course because it was on one of the days he cared for his three children. Alongside this, the course was in Waterford and he found the cost of travelling to it prohibitive.
Mr Walsh said his client acknowledged he committed the public order offence of being drunk and a danger to himself and others during the period the case was adjourned. There was also an assault offence pending before the courts and at this stage he was entitled to the presumption of innocence in relation to that matter.
He requested the court to bare in mind that his client didn't receive any convictions between 2002 and 2013 and any steps taken to overcome his addiction problems would improve his chances of not re-offending.
Judge Teehan said the possibility of paying compensation to Mr Bove was mentioned and asked if Power had any compensation in court?
Mr Walsh responded that his client hadn't compensation in court but had indicated he was willing to pay compensation though his means were limited.
Judge Teehan said Mr Bove was the victim of a serious assault while going about his business and was left unable to work for a week afterwards. He also noted that the victims of serious assaults suffered a significant psychological impact. He described Power's behaviour as "entirely reprehensible."
The Judge said the Probation Service report carried out on Power was not entirely positive and from his reading of it, Power's feelings towards Mr Bove were not "unequivocally apologetic".
"When the matter was before me back in March it was adjourned to today's date on very specific terms. He knew then he was facing a prison sentence of three years. He knew he had to be on his very best behaviour.
“But on August 28, he was found in an intoxicated state even though he knew he should not consume any alcohol, the Judge continued.
Judge Teehan referred to Power's failure to provide urine analysis test results and while he had received a medical report showing Power completed a methadone programme, it was not more forthcoming than that.
And he commented that while Power found the cost of travelling to Waterford to attend an anger management course financially difficult, it hadn't stopped him consuming alcohol when gardai found him in an intoxicated state.
Judge Teehan acknowledged that his client had done some useful voluntary work and he accepted that his addiction problems were a considerable factor in his convictions.
"I made clear in March there was a three years sentence likely to be imposed. The sentence will be three years and I will suspend the last 12 months for two years after his release on condition that he keep the peace and be of good behaviour. He is also to abstain entirely from ingesting alcohol and drugs and he should engage with the Probation Service for the first 12 months following his release.
The Judge stipulated that Power should engage with the addiction services from the time of his release from prison and that he stay away from Mr Bove's business premises and not approach Mr Bove or his family save at their express friendly invitation.