Clondalkin man slashed victim’s cheek open with knife

Clondalkin man slashed victim’s cheek open with knife

By Sonya McClean

A man who was caught by gardai slashing the cheek of an acquaintance in broad daylight will be sentenced next October.

Darren Gallagher (46) was spotted by Garda Dominic Downing slicing his victim, who is “known to gardai”, with a Stanley blade outside a supermarket before “casually walking” away. It was 4pm and the plainclothes garda was on routine patrol at the time.

Dublin Courts 4

Gallagher was stopped minutes later and a knife was found in his tracksuit bottoms.

He later claimed in garda interview that the victim had threatened both him and members of his family, although Garda Dowling said he was not in a position to confirm if this was the case.

The garda agreed with Anne-Marie Lawlor BL, prosecuting that he called to the victim’s home that day and could see the cut to his face.

He said the man had never made a statement to gardai and had been “unwilling to engage” with the investigation. He has not prepared a victim impact statement.

Gda Downing said he was not aware if the man ever sought medical assistance, but confirmed that although the cut had healed, he did have a noticeable scar.

Gallagher, of St Ronan’s Park, Clondalkin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assault causing harm to the man on Neilstown Road, also Clondalkin, on August 22, 2016. He has three previous convictions for minor offences.

Judge Karen O’Connor said the court had grave concerns that this attack had been carried out in public in broad daylight when members of the local community could have been in the vicinity.

She noted that Gallagher had walked away casually from the scene.

She adjourned sentencing to October 17 next, remanded Gallagher on continuing bail and ordered a probation report for the next date.

Garda Downing agreed with Jennifer Jackson BL, defending, that Gallagher had not come to garda attention since 1990, the last recorded conviction against him.

He accepted that the victim was “known to gardai” and he wasn’t refusing to co-operate with the investigation because he was in fear of Gallagher.

Ms Jackson submitted that her client’s plea of guilty was of assistance to the prosecution considering the position the victim took in relation to the investigation.

She suggested it was a once-off incident out of character for her client and Garda Downing confirmed he believed Gallagher was unlikely to come before the courts again.