A 17-year-old boy has been sent forward for trial accused of knocking a man unconscious and breaking his jaw with a “hammer-like blow” during an assault in Dublin.
The boy was charged with assault causing harm to the 38-year-old Romanian man and production of a weapon in connection with the incident on the North Circular Road, on September 18, 2018.
He appeared before Judge Brendan Toale at the Dublin Children’s Court where he was served with a book of evidence.
Judge Toale told him he must notify the prosecution if he intended to use an alibi in his defence. He was granted legal aid and returned for trial to the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court where he will face his next hearing on May 24.
He cannot be named because he is a minor.
The Director of Public Prosecutions has recommended he should be tried in the Circuit Court which has tougher sentencing powers and the Children’s Court had refused jurisdiction to hear the case.
In an outline of the allegations, Garda Colm Kelly said the victim and his friend had been sitting on a wall.
His friend got into an altercation with the boy who walked past and allegedly made a derogatory comment.
The 38-year-old told the then 16-year-old boy he had nothing to do with the initial row but the youth replied: “Your friend did”.
The court heard the teen was armed with a broken hurley and the man was dragged to the ground. The man received a number of blows to the face.
The boy struck the man with the hurling stick and stamped on his head, the court was told.
Photos of the man’s injuries were shown to the judge who also watched CCTV footage of the incident.
Garda Kelly told the court the man said in his statement the last thing he recalled was a boy “standing over him and receiving a hammer-like blow to the head”.
He lost consciousness and suffered a fractured jaw cut, the court heard.
Reports on the teen’s educational and behavioural issues were furnished to the court.
Defence Sandra Frayne asked the juvenile court to accept jurisdiction by taking into account the boy’s age and level of maturity.
The teen had been found to have educational problems and a tendency to react badly to situations. His mother had tried her best to help him and the boy who had “extremely severe emotional and behavioural difficulties” and was referred to mental health services.
There were reports on the boy’s issues going back a decade, the solicitor said and she asked the judge to note the teen had been goaded by the victim’s friend at the start of the incident. However, it was held the case was too serious and jurisdiction was refused.