Jason Power was convicted of assaulting Susan McCarthy at his home in the early hours of November 7, 2015
A YOUNG man who was convicted of assaulting a woman who barged into his bedroom has avoided an immediate prison sentence.
Throughout a contested hearing, Jason Power, aged 20, who has an address at Collins Avenue, Southill, denied assaulting Susan McCarthy insisting he had acted in self defence.
Ms McCarthy, aged 23, told Limerick Disrict Court she was drinking with Mr Power and a number of other people in the early hours of November 7, 2015 – the date of the offence.
She said at one point she “went for a walk” but that when she returned to the house the others were no longer present.
Having established they had gone to Mr Power’s home, she made her way there in the hope of establishing why they had left.
Ms McCarthy told the court when she entered the house, she located the defendant and three other people in his bedroom.
“Jason immediately jumped off the bed and just started pushing me out of the house,” she said.
Ms McCarthy, who is currently serving a lengthy prison sentence for ‘glassing’ a woman at Parnell Street in 2014, said Mr Power punched her and knocked her to ground and that she sustained a cut above her left eye in the struggle.
Judge Marian O’Leary was told she was treated at University Hospital Limerick following the incident and received 10 stitches.
Cross-examined by solicitor Darach McCarthy, Ms McCarthy said she had consumed “at least” two naggins of vodka on the night as well as Xanax tablets which were not prescribed to her.
Ms McCarthy accepted the combination of alcohol and Xanax tablets “gives you a buzz” and that her memory of what happened on the night was “a bit hazy” due to her level of intoxication.
During heated exchanges, the 23-year-old said she was upset when she barged into Mr Power’s bedroom.
“I was upset and angry that they took off and left me behind purposely. I wanted an answer as to why they took off.”
When Mr McCarthy put it to the witness that she “had a thing” for his client, she replied “I did in my f***”
In his evidence, the defendant, who has 22 previous convictions, accepted he “went away” with a number of friends when Ms McCarthy left to go to a cousin’s house.
He said while in his bedroom the door “swung open all of sudden” and that he pushed Ms McCarthy “back towards the door and out the gate”.
While insisting his actions were in self defence he accepted hitting Ms McCarthy above the eye.
”The injury could have been caused by me,” he said in reply to Inspector Dermot O’Connor.
Insp O’Connor put it to him that his defence of self defence was “very convenient” – particularly as he had not mentioned it to gardai following his arrest.
Mr Power rejected this saying: “I could have done her for trespass. I didn’t think this would happen. I did hit her but it was in self defence.”
When it was put to the defendant that he had taken the law into his own hands, he replied: “Where we come from, we don’t really ring the guards.”
Having considered the evidence and legal submissions, Judge O’Leary convicted Mr Power describing what happened as “terribly sad”.
She imposed a three month prison sentence which she suspended for two years. She also imposed a €200 fine.