Fr Cleary's son Hamilton 'broke doorman's nose'

Actor and model Ross Hamilton has been remanded on bail pending sentence for breaking a pub doorman's nose during a drink-fuelled attack.

Ross Hamilton, a son of Fr Michael Cleary, one of Ireland's best known priests who died in 1993, appeared at Dublin District Court today for a eighth time since he was charged.

Mr Hamilton (aged 34), of Whitworth Road, in Phibsboro, in Dublin, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to doorman Martin McKevitt outside the Botanic House pub, at Prospect Way, in Glasnevin, in Dublin, on October 1 last.

Other charges for breach of the peace and being intoxicated, unlawful possession of a quantity of cannabis and violent behaviour at Mountjoy garda station, on the same date were withdrawn today on application of the state.

Garda Elaine Smith told Judge Denis McLoughlin that she saw security staff from the pub “waving for assistance”.

“I observed a male strike the security guard in the face,” she said, adding that Hamilton was arrested after a “short pursuit” and taken to Mountjoy garda station.

Mr McKevitt appeared “distressed”; he had blood on his face and a swollen nose and had to attend hospital. The court heard that his recovery is “on-going”.

Mr McKevitt told the court he needs a further operation and that a bone in his nose was broken and “sticking out into the left nostril”. He said his nose is still painful and “occasionally running” and he suffers from sneezing.

The court heard that Hamilton had eight previous convictions from 1998 to 2004 for motoring and public order offences as well as one for violent behaviour in a garda station.

Counsel defending said his client, who remained silent during the case, cannot remember the incident completely but has some “vague recollection”.

Hamilton had been out with friends and was drinking whisky “heavily on an empty stomach”.

Counsel said his client wished to apologise to Mr McKevitt and had made an offer of compensation.

However that was rejected by the victim who intends to pursue Hamilton for damages in the civil courts.

Counsel also submitted that his client was “humiliated” and his actions were “out of character”.

The barrister asked the court to note that while Hamilton had previously been involved in public order incidents, they were in 2003 and 2004.

Judge McLoughlin said he regarded the assault on Mr McKevitt as “very serious” and he would have imposed an immediate jail sentence but for the fact that there had been a seven-year gap between the incident and Hamilton's previous offences.

The judge also said that he had to take into consideration the on-going effects the attack had on Mr McKevitt.

He adjourned sentencing until a date in July for a probation report to be furnished on Hamilton's suitability to do 240 hours community service in lieu of an eight months' imprisonment.

Following the death of Fr Cleary, who was popularly known as the “Singing Priest”, it was revealed that he had fathered two children with his housekeeper Phyllis Hamilton with whom he had a relationship for 26 years.

Their first child was given up for adoption, while their second son, Ross, lived in Dublin at parochial house in Harold's Cross, with Fr Cleary and Phyllis, who died in 2001.

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