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Man who 'savagely' assaulted his partner after drinking and taking cocaine jailed for 32 months

Paul Barry (37) told gardai his former long-term partner sustained her injuries in a fall in the bathroom.

Image: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland

A MAN WHO “savagely” assaulted his partner after he had been out drinking and taking cocaine while celebrating his birthday has been jailed for 32 months.

Paul Barry (37) later told gardaí his former long-term partner, Kim Fox, had sustained her injuries in a fall in the bathroom. Gardaí had been alerted after Fox’s daughter discovered her lying in a “pool of blood” in her bedroom while Barry was in the living room drinking cider.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard Fox had been in bed when Barry arrived home and she was knocked unconscious by the first blow.

Fox sustained soft tissue damage to her upper body and face, a fractured eye socket, three fractured ribs and two missing teeth. She was in hospital for three days.

Kim Fox told the court she has recovered physically but continues to suffer mentally. She said her daughter was also suffering.

“She found me in a pool of blood in the bedroom. She thought I was dead,” she said.

Barry, of Achill Road, Ballybrack, Dublin pleaded guilty to assaulting Kim Fox causing her harm at her home in Loughlinstown on 9 December 2018.

Barry has 17 previous convictions. These include a robbery and assault dating back to 2006, with the remainder being mostly road traffic offences.

“What motivated the defendant on the date in question is not clear but what is clear is that he savagely attacked the injured party in this case and beat her very badly,” said Judge Martin Nolan.

He said it seemed Barry made sure Fox’s daughter did not help her and ushered her out of the room but due to her daughter’s “quick thinking” the gardaí were alerted.

“She has physically recovered but is mentally traumatised as a result of this unprovoked serious assault,” said Judge Nolan. He also noted Barry’s “callous attitude” to Fox on the night.

He said there was no doubt Barry was under the influence of alcohol and drugs on the night but noted he had taken them voluntarily and was therefore responsible for his actions.

Judge Nolan said the only real mitigation in the case was his early guilty plea, good work record and expression of remorse.

He said it was a serious assault and Barry must undergo a reasonably substantial term of imprisonment. The maximum sentence for this offence in five years’ imprisonment.

Judge Nolan imposed a 32-month sentence backdated to when Barry first went into custody.

During the hearing, Kim Fox took the stand and outlined her injuries to Judge Nolan. She said that she had lost her job as a result of being off work for a month after the assault. She said she had lost weight and doesn’t eat or sleep like she used to. “I am living on my nerves,” she told the court.

Aoife O’Halloran BL, defending, said Barry had taken significant alcohol, as well as two grams of cocaine on the night. He had also drunk shots bought by his friends for his birthday.

O’Halloran said she was instructed to apologise for her client’s actions, which he knew were wrong. She said he hoped she is OK and that she could move on and do better in her life. Counsel said Barry was “very regretful” and he said he hated himself for what he had done.

Counsel said Barry began to use cannabis and tablets as a teenager, and had started to use cocaine recreationally, as a “social crutch” rather than as an addiction. She asked the court to take into account his early guilty plea.

About the author:

Fiona Ferguson

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