Assault over refusal to dance

A man who assaulted a woman who refused to dance with him in a nightclub has been ordered to pay €1,000 in compensation.

Krzysztof Stefaniak, aged 36, pleaded guilty to a charge of assault, and to two public order charges, arising from an incident at O’Riada’s Nightclub, Macroom, Co Cork, on August 7.

Macroom District Court heard Stefaniak, with an address at 2 Lucy’s Lane, Macroom, approached a woman on the night in question and requested a dance.

She declined, after which he pushed her to the ground, became “difficult and aggressive”, and was ejected from the nightclub by security, Judge James McNulty was told. Gardaí later arrested the accused outside the nightclub.

Stefaniak had four previous convictions, two for public order, with the most recent in 2008.

Solicitor Sean Cahill said his client was “happily married”, but his single brother had been visiting from Poland at the time and the pair “went out on the tear”.

“This was a one-off incident; he shouldn’t have been there at all,” Mr Cahill said.

The solicitor said the accused accepted he was foolish, and he was “concerned about the domestic consequences of all this”.

“I daresay at home this wasn’t greeted well?” Judge McNulty asked.

“He had to explain himself,” Mr Cahill replied.

While Stefaniak had brought €500 with him to court, Judge McNulty said the amount was insufficient due to “the distress and embarrassment” caused to the woman who did not suffer any physical injuries as a result of the assault.

Judge McNulty deferred imposing a penalty for one month, but told Stefaniak he should expect to pay €1,000 to his victim, and a €500 fine.


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