A 20 year old man who masturbated in front of two women at the Market Square and had punched one of them in the face, later returned with a hammer, which a member of the public retrieved to ensure he didn’t use it, Dundalk district court heard last week.
Michael Hutchinson of Clann Chulainn Park, Dundalk was before the court charged with a number of offences including assault causing harm and returning to the scene with a hammer, which he then hid behind a pillar on May 15th last.
He was also prosecuted for assaulting a second female and engaging in an act of masturbation with the intention of engaging in offensive conduct of a sexual nature and causing fear and distress.
Court presenter Sgt. Laura Blanch told the court last Wednesday that gardai received a report at 1.30am that a male had punched a woman at the Market Square and on their arrival at the scene, a witness handed over a hammer, which he claimed the male had punched the woman with in the face, before hiding it behind a nearby coffee shop.
The victim told gardai she’d been skateboarding and socialising in the area in a small mixed group and two male friends left to get food.
She said a man came walking towards her with his trousers around his ankles and masturbating.
She told him to go away and he lifted his fist and pretended to hit her.
He later returned and asked for a lighter and then a hug and when she told him to “F*** off” he punched her in the face.
The victim, who had a cut lip and reddened cheeks at the scene, didn’t receive medical treatment but photos of her injuries were handed into the court.
The defence solicitor said her client, who’s been in custody since August, had a troubled background and mental health issues.
She added that due to a substance abuse problem he has no recollection whatsoever of what happened.
Judge Cephas Power adjourned the case for the preparation of a probation rand victim impact reports for sentencing on December 22nd.
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