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Pedestrian cleared of kicking woman garda in stomach

A MAN accused of kicking a female garda in the stomach has been found not guilty of public order charges.

Patrick Browne (22) had been accused of kicking the garda and trying to headbutt her colleague after he was questioned about stepping out in front of a Dublin bus.

A judge dismissed the charges against him after saying she had doubts about what had happened on the day.

Mr Browne, with an address at Whitworth Road, Drumcondra, pleaded not guilty to breach of the peace, failing to obey garda directions and obstruction in an incident at Marlborough Street on August 4, 2010.

Garda Sheila Fitzgerald told Dublin District Court she was on beat duty with Garda Stephen Flynn when she saw the defendant shouting abuse at passers-by before stepping out in front of a bus, which "jammed on" its brakes.

Garda Fitzgerald said she approached him, took down his details and told him to leave the area. She said he then told the two gardai to "f*** off".

"At this point he became extremely aggressive, he kicked me in the stomach and attempted to headbutt my colleague," the garda told the court.



Drowsy

The accused was restrained, arrested and taken to Store Street Garda Station. In evidence, Mr Browne said he was returning from his methadone clinic on the day and was "a bit drowsy" as he crossed the road.

"I nearly got a smack of the bus and instead of helping me (Garda Flynn) said, 'watch the f***ing bus, you clown,'" Mr Browne said.

He admitted saying "f*** off" in response to this. He denied verbally abusing any members of the public, kicking Garda Fitzgerald or trying to headbutt Garda Flynn.

aphelan@herald.ie