Man bites garda’s ear and head-butts another in Limerick chipper

A GARDA had his ear almost completely bitten off and a colleague’s face was smashed by a head butt when they went to assist a distressed young child in a Limerick fast-food premises.

A 31-year-old man from Ballinacurra Weston who attacked the two gardaí was arrested after reinforcements were called.

The two gardaí had gone to the Chicken Hut premises in O’Connell St at about 11pm last Saturday night after reports a child aged about three was in a distressed state.

The garda who received the vicious bite wound had his ear sewn back after being transferred to the Mid-Western Regional Hospital, but will need further surgery.

A gaping laceration inflicted on the second garda necessitated 10 stitches to his forehead.

Inspector John O’Reilly said the gardaí went to the scene when a “child welfare issue” arose.

They were caring for the child when their assailant launched a vicious assault.

The man is in custody and due to appear at Limerick District Court.

Insp O’Reilly said: “This is what gardaí have to put up on the streets at night time.”

It is believed the child has been reunited with its mother.

Meanwhile, following another serious assault early yesterday a man was in “a critical, but stable” condition last night in the Mid-Western Regional Hospital after being attacked as he sat in a car with two others.

The victim, who is in his 20s is being treated at the intensive care unit.

He was assaulted in a car when it was parked at Crecora Avenue, Ballinacurra Weston, at about 2am.

According to eyewitnesses he was pushed out of the car onto the road and hit by the car as it sped off.

He is from the area.

The car, a silver Opel, was found crashed against a wall a short distance from the scene of the assault.

An ambulance brought the badly injured man to hospital.

Insp Gerry McNamara of Roxboro Road Garda Station said they have carried out door-to-door inquiries in the area and the newly formed regional armed response unit are assisting in the investigation.

A forensic examination of the car has also been carried out.

It is believed that the injured man knew his assailants.

Due to the severity of his injuries, gardaí have been unable to interview him.

Cllr Maria Byrne has called for the expansion of the city centre CCTV system following another serious incident in the People’s Park.

Ms Byrne said: “A man in his 30s, who I know, was attacked at knifepoint and robbed by five youths at 3.30pm in the afternoon.”

She said the youths were waiting behind bushes and pounced on their victim.

Ms Byrne said: “At the start, two of them attacked and he managed to hold them off. They were then joined by three others, one of whom carried a knife. We need more CCTV in the city.”

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