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Sunday 25 September 2016

Attack accused teen 'refused to get out of bed' for court

Professor Stephen Cusack
Professor Stephen Cusack

A 16-year-old boy charged with attacking a young man who suffered serious facial injuries would not get out of bed to come to court.

The boy, who cannot be named because he is minor, is charged with assault causing harm to Andrew Cusack (21), who was treated for lacerations to his face in St James's Hospital following the alleged incident in the early hours of May 2 at Dame Lane.

A bench warrant was issued by Judge John O'Connor at the Dublin Children's Court yesterday, when the boy failed to turn up for his case.

He was initially granted bail on May 6 with strict conditions, including a ban on going to Dublin city centre.

However, he was arrested there again within hours of getting released, and was allegedly in possession of a knife.

He was remanded in custody for a week. On May 16 he was re-admitted to bail with stricter conditions. The teenager was barred from the Dublin 1, 2, 7 and 8 areas; he had to sign on daily at his local garda station, obey a 9pm-8am curfew and abstain from alcohol.

His mother told the court she would supervise him.

Warned

The case resumed yesterday and Judge John O'Connor was told the teenager had abided by the bail terms. However, the boy subsequently had a row with his mother and refused to get out of bed to come to court.

Judge O'Connor issued a bench warrant for his arrest.

He had warned him last week that if he broke bail again he could go back into custody until his trial has been heard.

At the boy's first hearing on May 6, the court heard the assault case would involve "an awful lot of CCTV as well". Mr Cusack is the son of Professor Stephen Cusack, an expert on emergency medicine at UCC.

Judge O'Connor has already made an order for disclosure of prosecution evidence to the defence, which is to include medical reports.

Garda Keith Connors has said he would be comply and that "there is an awful lot of CCTV as well".

The boy has not yet entered a plea to the charge. Directions from the DPP are required and a decision has yet to be made as to whether the case will remain in the Children's Court or instead be sent forward to the Circuit Court, which has tougher sentencing powers.

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