Schoolboy's ear slashed with golf club
A drug addict who tore a secondary school student's earlobe with a golf putter has been given a three-year sentence by Judge Katherine Delahunt at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.
Garda Niall Bright revealed that Alan Griffin arrived at Beneavin De La Salle College with the golf club minutes after his younger brother had told him about a schoolyard fist fight taking place between two students.
Griffin (21), of Mellows Road, Finglas, broke his putter while beating the now 17-year-old youth about the neck and shoulders.
He denied involvement and blamed others for the offence in all his subsequent garda interviews but eventually pleaded guilty to assault causing harm on January 29, 2008.
Garda Bright told Mr Roughan Banim, prosecuting, that Griffin had no previous convictions at the time but has since amassed 18, including 11 drugs offences, and is currently serving a two-year sentence for attempted robbery which will finish in April 2011.
He said the injured boy received seven stitches on his left earlobe after the attack.
The garda agreed with Mr Niall Nolan, defending, that his client had "addiction issues" at the time which was reflected in his "losing touch with reality" during the garda interviews.
Mr Nolan submitted that Griffin had had a dysfunctional upbringing, with early drug abuse and lack of education.
Griffin told Judge Delahunt as she prepared to sentence him: "I would like to say I am sorry for my part in the assault, I was in a bad state of affairs at the time. I am sorry for the injuries and will not reoffend when I get out."
Judge Delahunt said she believed Griffin was a young man who could rehabilitate himself and go back into the community.
She said he had "gone off the rails" at the time but has used his time in custody wisely.
She imposed a three-year sentence with the final 18 months suspended and backdated the sentence to June 2009, when he went into custody.
As he was led away, Griffin called out: "Thank you very much your honour, I won't let you down."