Assault accused ‘a danger to the public’

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A judge has said a man accused of assault is a danger to the public’.

District Judge Barney McElholm made the comment as 30-year-old John Patrick Nixon appeared at the local Magistrate’s Court.

Nixon, of Harty Court, is charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent on July 18.

The court heard the alleged injured party sustained a broken nose, a cut to the back of his head which required glue, 25 stitches to his upper lip and damage to his eye sockets.

It is alleged Nixon and the man were drinking together in the defendant’s Harty Court home.

In the mid-afternoon, Nixon allegedly assaulted the man by punching him to the ground.

The court heard allegations the 30-year-old kicked and stamped on the man numerous times.

Two females intervened, however they have not given a statement to police.

The alleged injured party went to hospital in a taxi and also initially refused to provide police with a statement.

He left the hospital and returned to the Ballymagroarty area.

The court heard allegations the man went to a local mobile shop and was assaulted from behind and knocked to the ground.

He was taken to hospital a second time for treatment to his injuries.

An investigating officer told the court the man had now made a statement in which he named Nixon as the assailant.

Opposing bail, the officer said Nixon has previous convictions for wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

He added the 30-year-old also has a conviction from Scotland for causing severe injury to endanger life.

Police opposed bail for fear of further offences and interference with witnesses.

Defence solicitor Walter Hegarty told the court it was accepted his client had significant and relevant convictions’.

However, he said Nixon had a suitable bail address away from the Ballymagroarty area and could be released on bail with strict conditions.

District Judge Barney McElholm refused the application.

He said there was a general duty of the court to protect the public from harm and I consider this man to be a very dangerous individual’.

The judge added he believed Nixon was a danger to the public in general’ not just the alleged injured party.

The 30-year-old was remanded in custody to appear in court again via videolink on August 20.