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Face of the missing man sought in golf club attack row

GARDAI want to interview a man who has been missing from his home since a savage row which left the victim seriously ill in hospital.

Officers investigating the row believe missing 27-year-old James 'Jessie' Byrne could provide vital information about the incident, which left the victim in danger of losing sight in one eye.

David Nolan (31) remains in a stable condition at St Vincent's hospital in Dublin after he was struck on the head with a weapon, possibly a golf club.

The attack on Mr Nolan took place in the quiet Woodview estate in Ashford, Co Wicklow, at around 9pm on Sunday.

Gardai believe that Mr Byrne, who lives in Woodview, was at the scene on Sunday night and could assist them with their inquiries into the attack.



Anxious

He vanished after the incident and gardai said last night that his family were concerned for his welfare and were anxious that he should contact them.

But there is no suggestion that he is at risk from anybody else as a result of the row.

Gardai said Mr Byrne could possibly be in the Glenealy or Blackhill areas of Co Wicklow.

He was described last night as 5ft 7ins tall, of slim build with light brown hair, cut short. When last seen in Ashford, he was wearing a black tracksuit.

Anyone with information on his whereabouts have been asked by gardai to contact them at Wicklow station, telephone 0404 60140.

Mr Nolan was struck on the head with the weapon as he was about to leave the area in his car.



Horrific

After the assault, he crashed the car into a wall in front of a house. Witnesses said he was bleeding heavily and had a gash to his head.

He stumbled out of the car in a confused state and was later taken by ambulance to hospital where his condition was initially described as serious.

One local man, who was with Mr Nolan after the incident and asked not be identified, said his injuries were horrific.

"It was terrible. I couldn't see his face because there was so much blood. It was running like a tap", he added.

Local county councillor John Snell said the area had been "shocked" by the viciousness involved in the assault.

"It's a shame for the local community as it's a nice area with many kids playing around on the street during the day," he said.

hnews@herald.ie