COMMUNITY SERVICE FOR MACHETE ATTACK WHICH LEFT VICTIM INJURED FOR LIFE – JUDGE CRITICISES HOW TRAVELLERS DEALT WITH INCIDENT


first_imgA 37-year-old man has been given a community service order after pleading guilty to a vicious machete attack which left his victim disabled for life.Charles Gerard Ward, with an address in Ballymacool Woods in Letterkenny, was warned he will be jailed for two years if he fails to complete the 240 hours of community service.The 37-year-old pleaded guilty to assault causing harm when he attacked Charles McDonagh outside a house in Canal Road Letterkenny in August 2009. Letterkenny Circuit Court was told by Patricia McLaughlin, prosecuting, that Charles McDonagh went to Canal Road with wife brigid and four children.Mr McDonagh said he was chatting to someone there when he turned around and saw Charles Ward “attempt to strike him in the face with a machete.”Mr McDonagh put his arms up to protect himself and suffered a wound to his arm.She said Ward then grabbed Mrs McDonagh, held the machete to her throat and threatened to kill her.Sgt Michael Hogan, outlining the facts of the case, said Mr McDonagh had suffered a deep gash to his arm. He spent two days in hospital and had to undergo surgery and had since lost most of the use of his arm and hand.Ward was questioned as part of the investigation and had handed over a dagger, claiming to Sgt Hogan that that was the weapon used.This was not accepted, Ms McLaughlin told the court, as witnesses had described the weapon used as a two-foot long machete.Ward was arrested in December 2009 but later moved to England. He was arrested two years later when he returned to Donegal for a wedding.Mr McDonagh meanwhile had told the DPP he would not appear as a witness in the case and had asked for the case to be dropped.Mrs McLaughlin said there was no feud between the families as a result of the incident.She said she believed a letter signed by Mr McDonagh asking for the case to be dropped was in the same hand-writing as a letter given to the court by the accused, Mr Ward.Sgt Hogan said Ward had completely abided by his stringent bail conditions since his arrest, despite the fact his wife and children were in Walsall in Birmingham, where Ward hoped to continue his scrap metal business.Judge John O’Hagan said that ‘once again’ there was a section three assault case before him.“Mr Ward decided that he believed Mr McDonagh was spreading rumours about him which he didn’t like. He armed himself with a machete – luckily Mr Ward was able to protect himself. He was brought to hospital and he still has problems with his arm and hand.“Mr Ward was likely to have been under the influence of drink if not other substances at the time.”He said the Traveller community “seem to have their own way of dealing with problems to the exclusion of the Guards.”He told Ward: “You either accept the laws of this society or you do not accept them and in this instance you didn’t.”He said Mr McDonagh had decided not to give evidence.Judge O’Hagan said he didn’t believe his comments “are unfairly made and they need to be said.”He said members of the community do go to Gardai for assistance but then later they didn’t want Gardai near them.On considering sentence he said there were “ubstantial mitigating factors” in that Ward had received “a very positive probation report and he wants to reform himself.”He said had Ward pleaded not guilty and gone to trial he would have imposed a five year sentence on conviction.However he imposed a two year prison sentence but substituted 240 hours community service, warning Ward that if he didn’t carry out the community service Gardai would be instructed to find him and he would impose the prison sentence.COMMUNITY SERVICE FOR MACHETE ATTACK WHICH LEFT VICTIM INJURED FOR LIFE – JUDGE CRITICISES HOW TRAVELLERS DEALT WITH INCIDENT was last modified: April 25th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:COMMUNITY SERVICE FOR MACHETE ATTACK WHICH LEFT VICTIM INJURED FOR LIFElast_img

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