A Dublin man who broke an off duty garda’s nose at a Swedish House Mafia gig at the Phoenix Park has received a suspended sentence of three years.
Sean Hulgrain aged 23 of Thornfield Square, Clondalkin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assaulting Garda Wayne Keown causing him harm on July 7, 2012. He has 17 previous district court convictions, including making a threat to kill.
Garda Keown was at the concert with friends when a member of his group bumped into another group, including Hulgrain. One of Garda Keown’s friends had met Hulgrain previously on a holiday in Crete.
Sergeant Joseph McLoughlan told John Byrne BL, prosecuting, that Hulgrain approached Garda Keown and said: “You’re a garda aren’t you?”
He insulted Keown by calling him a “garda scumbag”, before squaring up to him and punching him in the face. He then ran off through the crowd of concert goers.
Judge Mary Ellen Ring suspended the sentence after hearing from Hulgrain’s lawyers that he had completely transformed his life since being released from custody last April into the supervision of the Probation Services.
The court heard Garda Keown had tracked Hulgrain down through his friend’s association with him on Facebook and had presented this to colleagues investigating his complaint. Hulgrain identified himself on a Facebook page printout.
The father-of-one denied being at the gig when arrested later and told gardaí he had been “down the country” on the day.
Sergeant McLoughlan agreed with Sarah-Jane O’Callaghan BL, defending, that her client hasn’t come to adverse garda attention since August last year and had €2,750 in court as a token of his remorse.
Ms O’Callaghan said that her client was diagnosed with ADHD at a young age.
“He shoots his mouth off and says inappropriate things and in this case he went too far and punched a man,” Ms O’Callaghan said.
She said that her client supported his partner and their new baby and hasn’t drunk any alcohol since the Swedish House Mafia concert.
Before passing sentence Judge Ring noted that Hulgrain has engaged with an anger management and alcohol awareness programmes and is drug and alcohol free. She suspended the sentence on condition he keeps the peace and that he continues to work with the Probation Services.