herald

Tuesday 26 March 2019

Taxi driver bit off part of man's ear during row in pub

Taxi man Lawrence Doyle. Photo: Collins Photo Agency
Taxi man Lawrence Doyle. Photo: Collins Photo Agency

A taxi driver who bit off part of a man's ear in "a vicious and violent assault" must complete 180 hours of community service within 12 months in lieu of a prison term.

Lawrence Doyle (51) was introduced to his victim, Christopher Darcy, by the barman in a Dublin city centre pub where they both had been drinking, though Mr Darcy had recognised Doyle.

Jumped

Gda Fergus Grant told Maddie Grant, prosecuting, that a short time later a row broke out between the two men and words were exchanged before Doyle jumped on Mr Darcy and "gave him a dig to the side of the head".

Doyle then locked on to Mr Darcy's ear, biting it, before the victim fell to the ground where the assault continued.

Judge Melanie Greally said it was clear it was a "drink-fuelled" incident, but that Doyle had been particularly out of control.

In sentencing, she acknow- ledged that Doyle had no previous convictions, co-operated with gardai and had €1,000 as compensation.

Doyle, of Stapolin Lawns, Baldoyle, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assaulting Mr Darcy causing him harm at Mullet's Bar on Amiens Street on May 15, 2017.

Gda Grant said the victim later told gardai that he was struck "dozens of times" in the chest while he attempted to protect his face.

Staff at the pub ultimately broke up the fight and Mr Darcy called an ambulance.

He was taken to the Mater Hospital where he was treated in the emergency department.

Nasty

A medical report said Mr Darcy had tissue loss of 3cm from his ear and would be left with a permanent scar.

Judge Greally said Doyle had left his victim with "a nasty injury of a permanent nature".

"He subjected him to a vicious and violent assault," she said, before adding that it seemed the incident was "out of character" for Doyle.

The accused claimed he had felt threatened by Mr Darcy but accepted he should have walked away.

Tara Maguire, defending, said Doyle had money in court as "a form of restitution".

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