Taxi driver assaulted during fare dispute

A passenger who assaulted a taxi driver in a dispute about a fare has been ordered to pay €1,300 for damage to the car to avoid spending five months in jail.

Taxi driver assaulted during fare dispute

By Liam Heylin

A passenger who assaulted a taxi driver in a dispute about a fare has been ordered to pay €1,300 for damage to the car to avoid spending five months in jail.

Damien Walsh, aged 33, who was living at 41 Henry St, Cork, and now living back in Tipperary town, pleaded guilty, yesterday, to charges that dated back four years.

Inspector John Deady said that on August 6, 2014, the defendant was involved in a disturbance with a taxi driver at Washington St, Cork.

“On arrival at the scene, the taxi driver said the defendant caused damage to the interior of his taxi, after a dispute about the price of the fare. The driver also said he was assaulted by the male passenger. He pointed out where the digital meter on the dash had been pulled out of position and the windscreen was smashed at a particular spot.

“The taxi driver said Mr Walsh tried to run away, on hearing that gardaí had been called. On speaking to the accused, gardaí found that his speech was slurred and he was incoherent.”

He pleaded guilty to charges of being drunk and a danger, assaulting Emmanuel Osobase and causing criminal damage to the car.

Judge Olann Kelleher said he would jail the defendant for five months, if he did not bring compensation totalling €1,300 to court in two months.

The judge queried why the accused had done nothing in the past four years to gather compensation.

Defence solicitor, Diarmuid Kelleher, replied: “Because his life has been a mess. He is behaving more responsibly and rationally now. He is a qualified hairdresser. He is from Tipperary town.”

Mr Kelleher said the accused was planning to take up a hairdressing job in Tipperary.

He also pleaded guilty to stealing two shirts, at Penneys on St Patrick’s Street, on July 3, 2015, and being drunk and threatening, during an incident at Caroline St on March 6, 2015.

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