Man jailed for unprovoked attack on stranger

A Dublin teenager who launched a horrific and unprovoked attack on a man he had never met has been sentenced to five and a half years in prison.

Luke Dunne, aged 21, of Sheepmore Crescent, Clonsilla, Dublin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Court to assault causing serious harm at Fortlawn Park, Blanchardstown on June 9, 2012.

The court heard that Joseph Nolan, aged 24, suffered a life-threatening skull fracture and a clot in his brain when he was assaulted by Dunne and a gang of men in a random attack following a house party.

Mr Nolan was left on the ground unconscious and choking on his own blood, with his left ear hanging off and almost torn in two.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring suspended the final 12 months of the sentence, saying that Dunne’s admissions on arrest meant at least one person had been prosecuted for the attack.

She said Dunne, who was the only person to have admitted the crime and had no previous convictions, was being given “greater than normal credit” to encourage such future co-operation.

She said the admissions relieved Mr Nolan of the extra trauma of having to come to court.

In a victim impact report, Mr Nolan said every aspect of his life has been affected by the assault.

He suffers palsy and nerve damage in the left side of his face and has had severe loss of hearing in one ear, meaning he can no longer work as a DJ.

Mr Nolan said he did not leave home for five months after he was attacked and found it difficult to return to work. He said his family did not know if he would pull through and his relationship with his girlfriend broke up.

The court heard that Dunne kicked and stamped Mr Nolan repeatedly in the face and body as he lay on the ground. He also punched him at least 10 times in the face.

Dunne admitted his role to gardaí after the assault and said he did not know why he attacked Mr Nolan.


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