herald

Thursday 21 September 2017

Man in court over savage street assault

VICTIM: Fighting for life in hospital

A 23-year-old man was due in court today in connection with the savage assault of a man after he objected to a passerby insulting his wife.

The victim in his 40s -- named locally as Gerry O'Connell -- remains in a critical condition today following the unprovoked attack on New Year's Day.

He is in a medically induced coma in Cork University Hospital (CUH) being treated for serious head injuries. It is understood the next 48 hours will be vital to his recovery.

His wife and family are maintaining a vigil at his CUH bedside.

Gardai arrested a 23-year-old man in the north Cork town of Mallow yesterday morning in relation to the assault.

The man, who is known to gardai, was brought to Mallow Garda Station.

He remains in custody to appear before Fermoy District Court later today.



SMOKE

The incident occurred in the early hours of New Year's Day in the Ballydaheen area of Mallow as the couple were walking home. It is understood the injured man had been out socialising with his wife and they were strolling home when they came across a young man.

He demanded a light for his cigarette only to be told by the woman that they didn't smoke. The young man then apparently insulted the woman and, when the husband sought to protect his wife, he was attacked without provocation.

Despite the woman's desperate attempts to assist her husband, he was subjected to a vicious beating and suffered several blows to the head before the young man fled on foot.

The woman suffered minor injuries in the attack and was said to be deeply traumatised when gardai arrived at the scene.

The injured man was rushed by paramedics to CUH but was later placed in a medically induced coma given the severity of his head injuries.

hnews@herald.ie

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