Four plead guilty to bonfire affray in Cork

Four men pleaded guilty yesterday to engaging in an affray on Bonfire Night in Cork City in a case where it was alleged that some men armed themselves with knives, sticks, meat cleavers, knuckledusters, and bottles in a violent row in a residential area.

The four men were due to go on trial at Cork District Court yesterday. However, their solicitors, Diarmuid Kelleher and Daithí Ó Donnabháin, indicated that the accused were all pleading guilty on the understanding that sentencing would be adjourned.

Inspector Joe O’Connor did not object to sentencing being adjourned with the four accused on the same strict bail terms.

Judge Olann Kelleher adjourned sentencing until Jan 10.

Stephen O’Brien, aged 27, of 23 Foyle Avenue, Knocknaheeny, Cork; Brian Long, aged 20, of 6 Fota Lawn, Knocknaheeny; Adrian Murray, aged 20, of 3 Courtown Park, Knocknaheeny; and John Heaphy, aged 27, of 13 Richmond Hill, Cork, all pleaded guilty to engaging in an affray, in that they engaged in a violent disorder with others.

Heaphy also pleaded guilty to a count of possessing a meat cleaver, Murray admitted having brass knuckledusters, and Long confessed to carrying a machete on the night.

A fifth man, who was not involved in the affray, Mark Hurley, aged 21, of 3 Dunmanus Crescent, Knocknaheeny, pleaded guilty at Cork District Court to being drunk and a source of danger and engaging in threatening behaviour on the same night.

However, when Garda John O’Connell began to give evidence, Hurley, who was already in custody and under escort by prison officers, began to shout abuse at Garda O’Connell.

“You baldy c***, you stupid baldy bastard,” Hurley shouted.

Judge Olann Kelleher told the defendant to calm down and Hurley said to the judge: “Fuck you as well.”

The judge sentenced Hurley to two months in prison for his limited part in the incident.


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