A Finglas man who walked into a house and stabbed a female acquaintance in the eye with keys after binge drinking on St Patrick’s Day has been jailed for three years.
Fredrick Parks (aged 38) formerly of Hazelcroft Gardens, left Ireland shortly after the 2006 attack and opened a pub in Portugal before he was brought back on a European Arrest Warrant.
Detective Garda Patrick Ryan revealed that Parks had been ejected from Finglas’s The Jolly Toper bar after verbally abusing his victim, that he went drinking in another pub before encountering the lady again later and stabbing her in the eye.
Parks, a father-of-one, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assaulting Ms Collette Gibson (aged 42) causing her harm at her friend’s Valeview Crescent home in Finglas on March 17, 2006.
He has five minor convictions dating back to 1992.
Det Gda Ryan agreed with Mr Garret Baker BL, defending, that his client’s personal life had been a “train wreck” at the time of the offence, that his marriage was ending and that he had a “rampant” drug and alcohol addiction.
The detective garda agreed that Parks had rowed with his ex-wife after a day of drinking and taking cocaine and went to The Jolly Toper in a “manic” state, where he was so abusive to his victim she had to slap him across the face before he was kicked out of the pub.
Parks told gardaí he went to another pub to continue drinking then on to Valeview Crescent where he’d attended past house parties.
Det Gda Ryan told Ms Rose McGowan BL, prosecuting, that Parks found Ms Gibson in the kitchen, grabbed her hair, pulled her head down and stabbed her in the left eye with what he later admitted was a set of keys.
Det Gda Ryan said gardaí couldn’t trace Parks until last year when they found out he was running a pub in Portugal.
He said Ms Gibson underwent two operations on her eye in March 2006 and has attended the Mater Hospital Eye Clinic on occasion since.
In her victim impact statement Ms Gibson described having “tunnel vision” in her left eye, being scared of another attack and only now regaining confidence to go out with friends in the four years since the incident.
Det Gda Ryan agreed with Mr Baker that Parks has had no contact with Ms Gibson since St Patricks Day 2006 and that he intends to resume life in Portugal on release from jail.
Mr Baker submitted to Judge Katherine Delahunt that his client hadn’t intended to stab Ms Gibson when he entered the house but had expected to continue partying.
He submitted that there was no reference to peripheral vision loss, or tunnel vision, in Ms Gibson’s most recent medical report though it stated she complained of “flashing lights” and “floaters”.
He further submitted that his client had lost his pub in Portugal this year because he was in custody in Ireland when he needed to renew his lease.
Mr Baker asked the judge to take his client’s very early plea and the 14-year gap between this and his most recent previous conviction into consideration.
Judge Delahunt noted Parks’ good work history and that he has used his time in custody “wisely” but said his offence was as the higher end of the scale for this level of assault.
She backdated the sentence to when he entered custody in October 2009.