herald

Wednesday 18 July 2018

Drunk man with brain injury was abusive to shop worker

Darren Byrne had ‘significant number’ of convictions. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Darren Byrne had ‘significant number’ of convictions. Picture: Caroline Quinn

A man arrested for hurling abuse at a shop assistant outside a supermarket was suff- ering from an acquired brain injury, a court has heard.

Darren Byrne (48), who was found by gardai "bothering" the woman at the shop entrance, had been drinking despite an injury from a road accident.

Judge David McHugh gave him a two-month suspended sentence.

Byrne, of New Bawn Drive, Tallaght, pleaded guilty to public intoxication and causing a breach of the peace at Super- Valu, Clondalkin, on June 7.

Sgt Maria Callaghan told Blanchardstown District Court that gardai were on routine patrol at nearby Neilstown Road when they saw Byrne in an altercation with a woman outside the shop.

Vulnerable

The gardai intervened and Byrne continued to be abusive to the woman. He was intoxicated and refused to calm down.

The court heard the woman was a staff member and the accused had been causing a disturbance in the store.

Byrne was injured in a road accident a year ago and had undergone extensive surgery, said his solicitor, Matthew Kenny.

He had "some form of brain injury" and was "quite vulnerable" since.

However, he "unwisely" chose to still take alcohol, which had "got him into difficulties", Mr Kenny said.

Judge McHugh noted that Byrne had a "significant number" of previous convictions.

He had already served a sentence on a threat to kill charge and "doesn't come to court with clean hands", the judge said.

"He's back to his old form substantially," he added.

Byrne "offered a humble apology to the lady he was bothering", Mr Kenny said.

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