Video evidence in garda assault trial unavailable

The video evidence in the trial of a garda accused of assaulting a colleague outside the Department of An Taoiseach was not available, a court heard today.

The video evidence in the trial of a garda accused of assaulting a colleague outside the Department of An Taoiseach was not available, a court heard today.

A solicitor for the accused, Garda John Burke, of Willsbrook Grove in Dublin’s Lucan, said the video evidence was crucial.

Garda Burke, 42, was accused of allegedly assaulting Garda Noel Boyle outside the Department in July 2003.

Richmond Hospital District Court heard the two men had resolved their differences, but the solicitor for the prosecution said some months later they then fell out again and charges for assault were filed.

The court heard one man was on duty and the other off at the time of the incident and they would have been well known to each other.

Judge Fitzpatrick heard the video evidence should have been retained for the trial.

Solicitor for the accused Martin Moran said: “I maintain that in the essence of a fair trial it should have been kept.”

Judge Fitzpatrick said: “There is no evidence therefore I cannot manufacture it for you.”

Mr Moran said: "I was informed it was not available and there was no reason given."

He said: “These are serious charges for the defendant particularly in his capacity as a member of An Garda Síochána.”

He added: “It could jeopardise his whole career.”

Judge Fitzpatrick said the issue of evidence could be brought before the trial judge on January 31 next.

The court heard there were seven Garda witnesses to appear at the hearing in January.

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