Monday 16 September 2019

Wexford town man assaulted a man who was registered as blind

A Wexford town man who seriously assaulted several men including one who was registered as blind was jailed for 13 months at a special sitting of Gorey District Court recently.

Adam Pitman (24), 35 King Street, Wexford was charged with possession of a knife at King Street on January 15, 2016; possession of an extendable baton made for or adapted to use for causing injury to others at John's Gate Street, Wexford on March 4, 2014; criminal damage to a case at Redmond Square, Wexford, on April 21, 2014; assaulting Warren Farrell causing him harm at Redmond Square, Wexford, on April 21, 2013 and with assaulting Vincent Mulligan causing him harm at Commercial Quay, Wexford, on April 21, 2103. He was further charged with violent disorder in Wexford town on December 6, 2013.

Pitman also faced a charge of the unauthorised taking of a car on January 12, 2015.

The court heard that on April 21, 2013 Pitman assaulted Mr Farrell and Mr Mulligan in the town centre. He punched Mr Mulligan to the face. Mr Farrell was attacked by four people, one of whom was Pitman and Pitman struck him over the head with a bottle breaking the bottle and knocking Mr Farrell unconscious.

He also kicked Mr Farrell as he lay on the ground. Using the broken bottle he slashed a nearby car tyre and scratched the vehicle.

Mr Mulligan was in court to give evidence and said that the assault had left him with 'severe damage to his right eye'. He said that prior to the attack he was registered blind and made Pitman aware of this before the assault.

He said the damage inflicted to his right eye that night couldn't be repaired and the whole assault has had a deep psychological effect on him. 'I find it difficult to get around and it's hard to see people.

'I'm isolated in my own community and am afraid go down the town at night.'

Mr Mulligan said he was set upon by a group of people and was kicked while on the ground and punched. He said that as a result of the assault he often wakes up in the middle of the night sweating believing he is fighting with people.

He said he had told Pitman he hadn't been looking at him on the night in question and was visually impaired.

A medical report in respect of Mr Farrell was handed into the court and Judge Gerard Haughton was told he had needed dental work costing €1,200 following the assault. He also had a 2cm deep laceration over his eyebrow oever his right eye and chipped his upper tooth and had a ragged upper lip laceration.

The court heard that on December 6, 2013 two Italian nationals were socialising in Mooney's Bar and shortly after were set upon by a group of males, one of whom as Pitman. They were punched to the head and face by Pitman leaving them with facial injuries.

On January 15, 2016 at 2.15am gardai came across Pitman who was wearing a balaclava holding a hunting knife which he left on a wall when he saw gardai.

On March 4 at 2.17am Pitman was found in possession of an extendable baton which he handed over to gardai.

On January 12, 2015 Pitman went to a party and there was a girl there who became upset because she couldn't get back home to New Ross. Pitman took the car belonging to the owner of the house to drive the girl home. He was apprehended by gardai on his way back to the house.

The court heard he had previous convictions including a five year suspended prison sentence in respect of assault causing harm.

In his own evidence Pitman said he wanted to apologise to Mr Mulligan and Mr Farrell saying 'I wasn't myself, I was heavy on drugs'.

The court heard he had been in custody since February 28 of this year and it 'had given him time to think'. He had missed his mother's funeral as a result of being in custody.

Pitman's sister Siobhan said that as a child Pitman had a very bad stammer which got worse when their parents split up when Pitman was eight years old.

She said that after the split 'Adam went off the rails' and as he got older started taking drugs, 'everything bar heroin', she said.

Ms Pitman said she was willing to do whatever she could to help her brother adding 'I'm disgusted by what he's done',

The court heard Pitman is the father of a four year old child.

Acting for Pitman barrister Jordan Fletcher said missing his mother's funeral had had an effect on Pitman, 'a very sobering effect and made him more resolute to turn his life around'.

Mr Fletcher said that Pitman is 'noticeably different to the first time' he had met him and he 'can actually have a conversation with him'.

He said the governor's report from Cloverhill is 'very positive' adding that Pitman is working there as a cleaner.

Solicitor Ed King said there was 'no getting away from his (Pitman's) appalling behaviour'.

Judge Haughton sentenced him to nine months in respect of the assault on Mr Mulligan and seven months in respect of the assault on Mr Farrell, both sentences to run concurrent. He sentenced him to five months for the criminal damage to the car and eight months for the violent disorder charge. Both of these charges are also to run concurrently to the initial nine month charge.

He sentenced him to five months for stealing the car and marked the possession of the baton taken into account. He imposed a nine month consecutive sentence for possession of the knife. He backdated the sentence to February 28 when Pitman went into custody and suspended the final five months of the sentence leaving Pitman with 13 months imprisonment.

Wexford People