herald

Friday 6 December 2019

Warrant issued for circus man who attacked taxi driver in city

William Bickerstaff failed to turn up for sentencing
William Bickerstaff failed to turn up for sentencing

A warrant has been issued for the arrest of a circus worker who punched a taxi driver in the face in a dispute over a fare in Dublin city centre.

William Bickerstaff (30) was touring Ireland with Circus Vegas when he was arrested last month for attacking and injuring the man.

He was released on bail but failed to appear in court for his sentence hearing, and Judge Bryan Smyth issued the warrant.

The accused, a father-of-three, of Bramblewood Manor, Banbridge, Co Down, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to a taxi driver on O'Connell Street.

He also admitted obstructing gardai, public intoxication and threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour.

The offences happened last July 12.

Superficial

Dublin District Court had heard that Bickerstaff climbed into a taxi, and when confronted he punched the driver, causing facial injuries.

The driver's eye was swollen and he was bruised, cut and bleeding, but the injuries were superficial.

Bickerstaff ran in the direction of Parnell Street in an attempt to abscond, then violently resisted arrest.

Judge Smyth had accepted jurisdiction after seeing photos of the taxi driver's injuries.

The court heard Bickerstaff had been working with Circus Vegas, based at the time at Coldcut Road, Liffey Valley and due to travel to Courtown in Wexford then Tramore in Waterford.

The accused would be returning home to the North this month, the court had been told during his bail hearing.

Judge Smyth had granted bail at €500 on condition that Bickerstaff reside at the circus.

The accused helped pitch tents and set up the circus.

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