Judge finds the facts proven as taxi driver accused of assaulting teenage girl

Judge finds the facts proven as taxi driver accused of assaulting teenage girl

A taxi-driver denied a charge of punching a young woman on the nose in the height of a row about a fare.

Oba Olatoye Aladunjoye of Belmont Court, Rochestown, pleaded not guilty to a charge of assault at Cork District Court.

The complainant, who is 17 years old, was at home in Rochestown in the early hours of December 7, 2013, when her mother and her mother’s boyfriend returned home by taxi having been out drinking together.

Shortly after their arrival home there was a bang on the door and the teenager answered to find the taxi-driver.

It was disputed between the evidence given by the complainant and the defendant whether the teenager offered to pay the driver on behalf of her mother.

“I assumed that because my mother and partner had been drinking there could have been some fault on their part,” the teenager testified.

She said he would not take the money.

“He was screaming in my face. I put my two hands up. He punched me in the nose. I was in shock, I pushed him,” she said.

Oba Olatoye Aladunjoye, aged 49, said: “I never hit this girl. I never raised my hand to hit any of them. The man was hitting me.”

Insp John Deasy said the teenager was sober and trying to do her best to sort out the situation and that the defendant hit her.

The defendant agreed that she was acting as a peacemaker and said it would have made no sense for him to assault someone trying to bring about peace.

The behaviour of others present that night was dealt with in a previous court case, Insp Deasy said.

Judge Olann Kelleher said the period around Christmas was a very difficult time for taxi-drivers.

However, he said he was satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that the teenager was assaulted.

The judge found the facts proved, but did not record a conviction against the accused, who had no previous convictions of any kind.

The judge accepted that the accused was under extreme provocation from the other man who was present that night.

Judge Kelleher put the matter back to September 9 and suggested to defence solicitor, Joseph Cuddigan, that the defendant would consider gathering some money as a gesture of compensation to the victim.

This story first appeared in the Evening Echo newspaper.


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