A Dublin father of one has received a three-year suspended sentence and ordered to perform 240 hours community service for repeatedly stabbing a man in the face with a fork.
Patrick Scanlon (aged 39) with an address at Oakley Housing Trust, James Street pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assault causing harm to Anthony Byrne (aged 62) at the victim's home in Kilmainham on January 19, 2008.
Garda Colin Barker told Ms Melanie Greally BL, prosecuting, that on the night of the assault, the victim returned to his home at around 8pm. As Mr Byrne approached his house, he noticed the bottom pane of the front door was smashed.
The court was told that as the 62-year-old opened the door, he saw Scanlon walking towards him.
Scanlon put his hood up and said: "Let me out." When Mr Byrne prevented the defendant from leaving, a struggle ensued while resulted in Scanlon ending up on the ground outside.
The court heard how while Mr Byrne held Scanlon down, he noticed the man was trying to take something from his pocket. He believed this object to be knife. Scanlon started "prodding or stabbing" the victim, making contact with his face.
Garda Barker said gardaí arrived at the scene a short time later and found Mr Byrne "sitting on the accused".
The victim was brought to hospital where he was treated for lacerations to his nose and forehead.
Scanlon was arrested and a search of his person revealed the metal object to be a fork.
A victim impact statement was submitted to the court which said that Mr Byrne was now "nervous going out on his own". He has trouble sleeping and experiences difficulty socialising as a result of the incident.
Garda Baker told defence counsel, Mr Luigi Rea BL, that Scanlon, who is originally from Finglas, has seven previous convictions.
The court was told Scanlon has had problems with drugs and alcohol but that in 2005 he received a "wake-up call" and has made efforts to overcome his addictions.
Mr Rea said Scanlon’s behaviour was on "an upward trajectory" with the exception of the incident in question.
Judge Desmond Hogan imposed a three-year suspended sentence on condition that Scanlon undergo any drug or alcohol treatment programme that The Probation Service deemed necessary.
Scanlon also entered into a bond to complete 240 hours of community service.