Jailed for one punch assault on stranger

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A teenager who left a man with a broken eye socket and nose has been jailed for fourteen months.

Mark Deehan, of Glenview Drive, Limavady, pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm on March 18, last year.

Derry Crown Court heard the 18-year-old struck the injured party with one blow as he walked along Linenhall Street in the town.

The man fell to the ground and was knocked unconscious for a short time.

It was revealed the assault was witnessed by police officers who gave first aid to the victim. He was bleeding from cuts to the forehead and chin and there was swelling to the face.

The man was taken to Altnagelvin Hospital where it was discovered he had a fractured eye socket and a broken nose, along with various other minor injuries to the face.

He made a statement to police and claimed that he had been walking along when he passed two males in the street. One of them said “what the f*** are you looking at” and then squared up to him.

However, he said that was all he could remember before coming round and seeing police giving him first aid.

Deehan was interviewed and claimed that the injured party had squared up to him and he was “afraid of being struck first”.

It was revealed to the court that the injured party is still receiving treatment to his injuries and has a metal plated eye socket. He is expected to make a full recovery.

Defence counsel Dean Mooney told the court Deehan has no previous convictions and has never been in court before.

He said that the teen is “shocked and appalled” by the injuries sustained by the victim and it is a “comfort to him that a full recovery is on the cards” for the man.

Mr Mooney said the more serious injury occurred when the victim fell to the ground and “the harm caused certainly wasn’t the intention of this young man”.

He urged the court to treat the incident as “out of character” for Deehan.

Jailing the teen, Judge Philip Babington said the injured party was not known to Deehan and it was a “serious stranger attack”.

He imposed a determinate 14 month sentence, five months of which will be spent in custody with the remainder spent on licence.