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Dublin: 14 °C Monday 6 July, 2020
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Two men jailed for attacking bin man and garda because their bin wasn't collected

The men, aged 32 and 21, were sentenced to three years in prison at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court Wednesday.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.
Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.
Image: Google Maps

TWO MEN WHO viciously attacked a bin man and a garda because their bin wasn’t collected have been jailed.

John McCann (32) along with Craig Redmond (21) launched the attack after the bin had been blacklisted for non-payment. They also assaulted Garda Michael Hughes after he arrived on the scene.

Both men were sentenced to three years in prison at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court Wednesday.

A victim impact report stated that Garda Hughes, an active marathon runner, was unable to get around because of a knee injury he sustained in the attack.

He thanked Garda Shane Deegan, who he described as a six-foot-four rugby player, for coming to his assistance. He said no family should have to see a garda come home in the state he was on the night of the attack.

He has since moved to an office job in An Garda Síochána. He feels his running career has been destroyed as he is unable to walk unaided. Garda Hughes concluded his statement saying that no one had ever given him an explanation or an apology.

McCann of Virginia Drive, Finglas, Dublin and Redmond of Valley Park Drive, also in Finglas were sentenced to three years by Judge Melanie Greally. She suspended the final 18 months of McCann’s sentence in light of his efforts to rehabilitate himself. She suspended the final year of Redmond’s sentence after taking the view that he has made less effort to rehabilitate.

McCann pleaded guilty to assaulting both the refuse collector and Hughes at Virginia Park Finglas on 8 May 2015. Redmond pleaded guilty to assaulting the bin man.

Garda Griffin said that the victim and his colleagues were collecting for Greyhound West Recycling in Virginia Park in Finglas, when they loaded a bin onto the truck that had been blacklisted for non-payment.

The men returned the bin and put a sticker on it for the owner to explain why it had not been collected. Three men then came from a nearby green area and started giving out to the victim’s colleague for not taking the bin.

The victim intervened to explain as he had better English than his colleague. The men began to push both of the bin men before they lifted the bin and tried to emptied it into the back of the truck. One of the men who had a lighter in his hand, threatened to set the contents of the truck on fire.

Redmond then tried to get the driver’s door open and pull the man out of the truck. The driver closed the door and moved off leaving his two colleagues behind.

Garda Robert Griffin said the victim managed to call the gardaí before one of the men threatened to punch him. The man moved backwards and fell over before all three attacked him, punching and kicking him all over.

Gardaí arrived a short time later to find the man still being attacked.

Garda Griffin said Garda Hughes witnessed Redmond attacking the victim and McCann pushing the man’s colleague. Redmond claimed they were defending themselves. McCann fled the scene but Garda Hughes pursued him, caught him and brought him back to his patrol car.

Gardaí were trying to establish what happened by talking to the bin men when one of the attackers became verbally abusive and was handcuffed and arrested.

McCann tried to punch Garda Hughes before running away but the garda managed to catch him. He continued to hit at Garda Hughes who warned McCann to get on the ground.

He called for urgent assistance before McCann kneed him in the knee. The garda managed to hold onto McCann before he was struck again in the face. Garda Deegan then moved McCann off Garda Hughes and he was brought into Finglas Garda Station.

Garda Hughes had multiple cuts to his arms and a swollen eye. He had an x-ray carried out on both his face and knees and suffers ongoing knee pain. He was required to rest for three months.

The other victim had a bump to the left side of his head, bruising and swollen left eye. He had cuts to his elbows and found breathing difficult because of kicks he had received to his ribs. He didn’t prepare a victim impact statement.

Garda Griffin told Karl Finnegan BL, prosecuting, that Redmond has struggled with addictions and has 30 previous convictions for offences including theft, assault, criminal damage, burglary and robbery.

McCann also has addiction issues and has 31 previous convictions for theft, road traffic, robbery, burglary, criminal damage and assault.

Sandra Frayne BL, defending McCann told Judge Greally that her client was drunk at the night but had not come to garda attention in recent months. She said he was in a traffic accident in 2002 which led to him being treated in hospital for a number of weeks. She described him as immature and limited intellectually.

Counsel said McCann wished to apologise to  Hughes for his behaviour. He had €1,000 in court for Hughes who said he would accept it on behalf of a relative, a terminally ill child.

James Dwyer BL, defending Redmond said his client had shown “huge remorse” and had used his time awaiting sentence rehabilitating from his alcohol and drug addiction. He said he couldn’t remember much of that day and had €300 in court as token of his remorse to his victim.

Read: Stepmom faces hefty legal bill after stepson wins €560k Lotto jackpot case

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Sonya McLean

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