State drops machete attack charge against 54-year-old Dundalk man

The alleged victim had claimed in a sworn affidavit that he was stabbed by somebody else

Dundalk Democrat Reporter


Dundalk Democrat Reporter


Dundalk District Court

The case was heard in Dundalk District Court

A 54-year-old accused of carrying out a machete attack in Dundalk has had the charge against him withdrawn by the State.

James Ward of O'Hanlon Park, Dundalk had been charged with assault causing harm at Setanta Apartments, Dublin Road, Dundalk on July eight last but last month, Dundalk District Court heard the alleged victim had claimed in a sworn affidavit that he was stabbed by somebody else.

The case had been adjourned in September so a medical report could be obtained with a view to seeking the directions of the DPP, but last month Insp. Martin Beggy told the court the consent of the alleged victim was needed to obtain the report, and the man was not now cooperating with gardai.

The Defence barrister told the court, the alleged injured party in a sworn affidavit had confirmed her client was not the person who stabbed him. He said he saw who assaulted him and he could not identify him as he was not known to him.

Insp. Beggy explained to Judge Brian O'Shea that there was a second person present in the solicitor's office when the affidavit was sworn, which was then faxed to the Defence in advance of a bail application, and gardai were trying to establish the circumstances behind that.

It was confirmed to the court that the alleged injured party - who underwent two surgeries following the attack, had subsequently made a garda statement in which he once again stated it was not the accused who stabbed him, having initially told gardai James Ward had attacked him with a machete.

The Defence barrister had argued that the case should be struck out, but Judge O'Shea said that what evidence there is or may be is a matter to be determined by the trial judge, but he was also taking into account the inherent frailties in the case and the accused was subject to onerous bail conditions.

He remanded him on bail until last Wednesday for the directions of the Director of Public Prosecutions when Judge John Coughlan was told that the DPP was not proceeding with the charge.