Five people who were involved in a “spectacular” melee during which a man was knocked unconscious have each been ordered to make donations to charity.
All five – Robert Browne, aged 33, of The Grove, Shannonvale; Donal O’Donoghue, aged 36, of Main Street, Doon; Anna Quilligan, aged 27, of Catherine Street; her husband Ayaz Arshad, aged 26, also of Catherine Street and Khuram Javed, aged 27, of Davis Street – pleaded guilty at Limerick Court to a charge of affray relating to the incident which happened over the Easter weekend.
Sgt Donal Cronin said a fist fight, which was “somewhat alcohol-fuelled” broke out at a licenced premises at Baker Place on March 30, last after a drink was accidently spilled.
He said the dispute then moved outside the premises and “escalated out of control for 10 or 12 minutes” and he added that gardai had “great difficulty in restoring order” following their arrival.
Sgt Cronin told the court that Mr Arshad’s brother had been knocked unconscious during the fight but he said investigating gardai were satisfied that none of those before the court had assaulted him.
The court heard he has since gone on to make a full recovery and Judge Eugene O’Kelly was told the man suspected of carrying out the assault is no longer in the jurisdiction as he has emigrated.
Solicitor Darach McCarthy, representing Mr Browne and O’Donoghue, said his clients were ashamed of their actions, which he said were “deeply out of character”.
He said matters “appeared to have gotten out of hand” and he reassured the court that there will not be a repeat in future.
Solicitor John Herbert, representing Ms Quilligan, Mr Arshad and Mr Javed, said it had been “quite a spectacular incident”, which had “generated white heat for a short period”.
After hearing details of the incident, Judge O’Kelly described the behaviour of the defendants as immature and he said they should have known better.
“It is very disappointing to see the Easter celebrations marred by all of these people getting involved in some sort of free-for-all,” he said.
After being told that none of the defendants have any previous convictions and that gardai do not have any ongoing concerns in relation to the defendants, the judge said he did not want to record formal convictions.
The case was adjourned until the New Year to allow each of the defendants make donations to the court poor box ranging from €200 to €500.
The judge indicated that if the monies are paid he will strike out the charges.