A man who kicked a Garda in the arm and chest as he helped arrest another man has escaped prosecution after a court was told it was an accident.
Shane McCallion appeared at Buncrana District Court charged with assault.
The court was told that Gardai were arresting a man at a laneway close to Liberty’s Nightclub in Buncrana after another incident just before 4am on December 23rd, 2018.
McCallion, aged 25 of Ard na Greine, Buncrana was in a car going by and thought the man being arrested was a man who had beaten up his friend earlier.
He approached the incident which was being filmed by a number of people using their phones.
He attempted to assault the man being arrested but ended up striking Garda Sgt Kevin Giles.
Solicitor for the accused, Mr Ciaran Mac Lochlainn said his client became upset and was extremely apologetic to Gardai.
“Sergeant Giles simply got between them,” said Mr MacLochlainn.
Judge Paul Kelly said McCallion should simply not have taken the law into his own hands saying Gardai were capable of arresting the man.
Mr Mac Lochlainn said his client had just returned from Australia where he was an electrician.
He planned to return there and stressed that a conviction may prevent him from traveling back.
Judge Kelly asked if McCallion has assaulted the other man would he not have been prevented from returning to Australia if convicted of that assault?
Mr Mac Lochlainn said his client was very drunk on the night, was apologetic and had brought €500 to court by way of compensation to Sgt Giles whom the court heard was not seriously injured.
Sgt Jim Collins said he would ensure the offer of €500 which was hnaded over in court would be made to Sgt Giles.
Judge Kelly remarked that Gardai being surrounded by “a baying mob” who were filming incidents was becoming far too common.
However, on the basis that McCallion had no previous convictions and had made a gesture to Sgt Giles, he would strike the matter out.