A Judge heard that a 16 year-old youth “out of nothing” stabbed another teenager with a knife in the abdomen who he “considered his best friend.”
The accused who is now 17 and can’t be named for legal reasons admitted an assault causing harm arising out of the incident on March 11 last year. It was stated that the accused had taken a considerable amount of beer and spirits along with between 20 to 40 benzodiazine tablets (D10s).
Dundalk Circuit Criminal Court heard that the accused was a talented boxer and of some intelligence.
He and the injured party, who is now 18, had been socialising and drinking together. They ended up in the home of the accused when he stabbed his friend.
Judge Leonie Reynolds remanded the accused in continuing custody for him to engage with the probation service to address matters of concern to the service regarding particularly anger issues and violent and disruptive behaviour, drug addiction and all issues highlighted in a report.
She deferred finalising sentence saying it would depend on how the accused progressed between now and July. She put the case in for mention on April 23rd next.
Garda Stephen Byrne said the accused ran into a room shouting at the injured party. The latter tried to calm him down, but the accused simply went for him.
He could see something was being held by the accused. He jumped back and hit the accused but felt something brush his eye and was stabbed in the abdomen.
The accused cuddled him and shouted for his mother to help. Garda Byrne said that the injured party was taken to hospital and was there for ten days.
He added that physically he made a full recovery but the injuries affected him mentally.
The injured party described in a statement how his mood towards people changed and wasn’t interested in the things he was before. He lost weight and suffered from depression and didn’t want to go out.
He also told of problems returning to school where he was disruptive and in regard to his participation in sport. He tried to return to rugby and just walked off the field.
He was aggressive and irritable after the incident and broke up with his girlfriend and wasn’t able to pursue a career in the army.
Witness said that the accused had a very limited memory of what happened, but accepted the evidence that he committed the assault.
Defence barrister Donagh McDonough said that the accused had a considerable amount of alcohol, consisting of beer and spirits and had taken between 20 to 40 benzodiazine tablets. He considered the injured party to be his best friend and deeply regretted his action.
He had no previous convictions, but Garda Byrne said he was on bail at the time on other matters which pre-dated this incident and came to attention afterwards.
Mr McDonough said the accused was in custody for the offence since October, and had engaged while in detention with the prison psychiatric and psychological services. He also had undertaken education courses. His parents separated when he was nine and he was a witness to violence in the family home. He was expelled from first year in secondary school. He had engaged in self harm and was taking medication which ran out when the stabbing took place. The defendent was remanded in custody to allow him to engage with the probation services.